Tuesday, November 6, 2007

High Schools: How Can We Make Them Safe?

Blog Stage 6::

In a blog titled "The Second Hand from Desiree," the author writes:

"This past Wednesday, a Stony Point High School student was arrested for carrying nine knifes to school. Although his intentions were proven pure, the question still arises.... What can be done in order to further protect out students? When conducting an internet search of 2007 School Stabbings, more than half a million articles appear. As I read through the different articles, it is apparent that youth violence is on the rise, especially within the schools' doors. As I have toured many High Schools in the local area, there are still many without metal detectors and many more without security guards in the huge parking lots or in the hallways during and between class hours. I, personally, believe that our school districts should be providing proper funding allocated specifically for the protection and security of the students. There should be metal detectors at each entry door to the school and there should be security guards circulating the hallways and parking lots. I also believe that there should be hot-line numbers where people could call and report suspicious activity or illegal carrying of dangerous objects to school authorities without having to give a name. Those hot-line numbers should be made easily assessable to all students. I also believe that school doors should be locked within five minutes after the bell rings for classes to start. During the day, all doors should remained locked from the outside, with the exception of the front entry doors located by the office. This would assist in preventing outsiders, with a motive to harm, from entering the building unnoticed. Another topic worth addressing is the ability and allowance of students to carry cell phones while on school premises. I believe there should be rules and boundaries around the use of cell phones at school. For instance, the student should not be allowed to text or call any person unless it is a justified emergency. There should be consequences and punishments established for students who choose to violate those rules. But, I believe that students should be able to carry cell phones with them in the case of emergencies. In this day in time, there have been many schools that have had terrorist or shootings, and the use of a cell phone could become essential in the protection of the students. Recently, I watched details of a tragic event unfold on the Today Show. A girl was at school when a deranged boy interrupted the class and decided to hold a few of the students hostage (including the girl), threatening to kill them if they did not meet his demands. The girl somehow managed to reach her cell phone and text her parents a simple "I love you both." The standoff between the student and the police lasted for several hours. The boy killed all of the female students. The girl's parents were thankful for their daughter's last words. I truly believe that there should be some more preventative actions in place in the school district, as well as rules and consequences when those establishments are abused."

I personally believe with almost everything she says. She makes great points about how to keep public schools safe. One thing that I do not think would work though, is locking the doors inbetween classes. The high school that I attended was split into different buildings so if a student had to go to another class, they had to walk outside.

I agree that there should be metal detectors, but I do not think that it would work very well in certain schools because there are numerous entrances and the public school system cannot afford to purchase 20 for each school. I also agree with the author that cell phones need ot be allowed; not to call and text during classes, but in case of emergencies. I believe that the administrators should allow the phones to be turned on, but be on silent. In an emergency, every second matters. When a cell phone is off and has to be turned on, it takes up to a minute. That could be the difference between life and death.

In the high school I attended, we had a local police officer on the campus most of the time, but when he wasn't there, anything could have happened. In most schools, they have lockdowns to search for drugs, alcohol, and weapons. I think these searches are justified and help keep students from bringing illegal things to a place that should be safe. But, what I think is rediculous is that people can get in trouble for having a couple black-cat firecrackers loose in their vehicle or even a couple loose bullets that fell out when they were hunting. Just because they have a couple loose bullets, I don't think that they should get in trouble. People acutally use their vehicles for more things than just driving to school and home. I do not think that a person should be punished for having loose bullets or minor firecrackers in their vehicle (as long as there is nothing else that could be used with the other items found to hurt someone).

I just wish that when a student goes to school, they could feel safe. Now days, there aren't many places people can feel safe, but schools should be a place where children can.

1 comment:

Wesley B. said...

You have a strong point. Violence is on the rise. But American public schools these days aren't exactly on the rise. Why is this? Has anyone ever stopped to think that maybe it's because schools are becoming more and more like prisons?

I honestly don't think metal detectors, police officers, random drug searches, and ridiculous zero-tolerance policies have any place in an educational setting. Maybe violence is on the rise because students are treated like prisoners? Honestly, more students are disciplined these days for ridiculous things than are disciplined for legitimate reasons.