Is Our School Safe?

We had an incident at school this week that made the news. It first glance it wasn’t a good thing. A kid brought a gun to school. A loaded, semiautomatic 9mm Ruger. I am not a gun guy, but I hear that is a serious piece. I was not on campus when it happened so I missed the whole lock down series of events, but due to the marvels of modern technology I was able to follow the events from another campus.

I do not know why the student felt the need to bring a gun to school, but it is becoming a less than unusual event. This was the third time in less than a month this has happened in our district. Our city has been experiencing a tremendous growth in violence, with a record number of homicides this year. Budget cuts have brought a reduction in police officers, and that I am sure has at least some impact on the violence levels. The police have actually warned people to not wear jewelry in public because of the threat of robbery. Its a dangerous place, and these kids live there.

The day after the incident there were a lot of kids who wanted to talk about it. They wanted to know that they are safe at school. I have to admit it was hard to tell someone they are safe at school when we go on lockdown as often as we do because of gun shots in the neighborhood.  Or when a student had a gun on campus. But the reality is students saw the gun, and told the right people. The police were on scene very quickly, and the student who brought the gun was in jail before lunch was over. We may not have armed guards or legions of police guarding the campus, but yes, I think our school is a safe place, because it is full of good people. Thats what I learned this week.