Editorial: School Security

Monika Wisner

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In Parkland Florida on Wednesday, February 14th, 19 year old Nikolas Cruz entered Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and hid among the students. The Miami Herald reported that one teacher said Cruz was banned from entering the campus with a backpack last year at the school due to his “obsessive interest in weapons” however, on the 14th, he is said to have been carrying not only a backpack, but also a rifle case. To top it off, Cruz had been expelled from the school in the previous year after getting into a physical fight.

Many questions have been brought up as result of such incidents, one of which being the safety of schools in general. If this expelled student who is known to have interest, knowledge, and access to weapons can just walk in through the front door, who’s to say that there’s anybody watching the safety of these students?

There is no government regulated security standard for schools in the United States. States and districts regulate their own baseline of rules such as dress code, curriculum, and discipline, but security has very little regulation.

The locking or monitoring of doors and gates and the use of metal detectors and security cameras, are intended to monitor access and behavior to the campus. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, in the 2013 to 2014 school year, 93% of public schools reported that they lock or monitor doors during school hours. This statistic is assumed to have grown in the last 4 years, but the question is raised- how do you qualify the degree of screening who comes in? Seeing as 75% of schools use security cameras, there is expected to be somebody watching the events happening, but no defense will be put in to play if they don’t know what they are looking for.

Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, although being one of the most deadly, is only one of the more than 200 school shootings since Sandy Hook in 2012. The number is going to continue to increase until something is done. School security needs to be increased. Lives need to be saved.

 

 

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Editorial: School Security