Chieftain Press

Safety and Education

Sage Feltus, Contributor

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When a parent sends a child to school they should be worried about their education, not their safety. Recently the concern has shifted, begging the question are our schools really safe? Safe is a loaded word, however. There are so many situations that can occur throughout a school day that it seems nearly impossible to deem a school completely safe. However this does not mean that we shouldn’t try our best to improve safety within our schools.

In 2014, during the first 14 school days of the year, 7 school shootings were recorded. To put this violent crime into perspective, there were 28 school shootings total in the 2013 school year. So it would seem 2014 is going to be the most violent and unsafe school year yet.

So what are schools going to do about it? We are nearing the end of the 2014 school year and we have already seen so much violence. For example, just in the month of January there were 11 active shootings at schools, it should be obvious that action needs to be taken to improve school safety.

At Middleton Elementary School in Chicago, safety is a priority. The school has taken precautions, such as having people buzz in when they enter the building and having to wait in a vestibule until the office has run a background check on the person. Also doors open inward and lock from the inside. There is a barricade that doesn’t allow for vehicles to approach the school. These are simple solutions, but many schools have taken these same precautions and still have had violence occur.

It is important that all schools take steps to increase safety; copying the precautions Middleton Elementary School has taken is an excellent place to start. There is no real way to make a school 100% safe but all schools should take some sort of action to increase safety. This isn’t something that should be done next year, or when finances allow. Action should be taken immediately to deter violence and make students and parents feel safer.

There have been 387 school shootings recorded since 1992. So many of those could have been prevented if schools had taken action to increase safety. I want to be able to feel completely safe at my school and know my siblings, friends, and family are all safe at theirs as well. Unfortunately, I don’t have that luxury. All schools need to step up to the plate and increase their safety measures so education once again becomes the primary concern.

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Safety and Education