Pro/Con: Should Schools Increase School Security?


YES (Nelson Cummiskey):

With the shooting at Parkland in Florida, schools across America went on a figurative lockdown. Now, some time after this terrible event and the student-led protests that followed, the buzzwords that were used are being forgotten and the raw emotion of the tragedy that happened in Florida has subsided, but has anything really changed?  What happens when school security loosens up again because people forget the heartache of those children who lost their friends and the families who lost loved ones? Do we just wait until the next deranged person decides to take out his frustrations on innocent people before we do something else, and will that something only be temporary? Do we act now, and if so, how?

Schools like North Springs would benefit from stricter security because we will be safer from any attack that my come into our school. Also, if all of these security measures are in place, then some people may not even try to do anything because they know they will get caught. Preventative measures include locking or putting alarm on all doors with one person permit granting access to students or staff if they need to enter or leave. Having security guards visible at the front door at all times is a deterrent that sends a message then and there. Also, metal detectors can sense a potential weapon and keep it from being used as shown in airports when a person has to go through TSA.

Providing the caretakers of children with a means to defend themselves and the kids, as well as having armed guards at schools, would be one way of handling it. After a school shooting in Israel in 1974, the country passed a law mandating that armed security guards in schools, provided gun training to teachers, and started frequent active shooter drills. Since then, there have been only two school shootings in Israel. According to the Washington Post, one incident was due to an unlocked entrance and exit in a school that was staffed by armed guards who are there mostly for terrorism. This shows how arming people is a viable and effective option. However, there are many other ways to stop school shooters before there are bullets flying.

One way to prevent any type of conflict in school shootings is to have some sort of background check on students. This could mean checking more intensively to see if they have had the cops called on them for possession of illegal firearms, have had domestic disputes, or have had psychiatric help. In the case of the Florida short, all three of these applied. In America, the Parkland shooter was visited by the police 35+ times prior to the incident. Proposed laws would no longer permit people with this heinous track record to purchase or own a firearm.

The FBI admitted to not looking into a tip placed to its centralized call center by a person that was close to the school shooter in Florida because it was deemed “lower priority.” Calls to local law enforcement went unreturned. If either the FBI or local law enforcement had decided to take a look into a potentially fatal case of a mentally disturbed man, it may have been stopped. In addition, when the kids heard the identity of the shooter, almost none of them were surprised who it was. If any of those kids had known they could say something about it, the whole incident may have been avoided. Setting up anonymous tip lines to administrators, in addition to national and local law enforcement, can adds an extra dimension of anonymous, non-punitive action that can help. Taking guns out of the hands of people who use them legitimately is not the way.

Some might say that adding more security may be stressful to students or show distrust in them. In reality tighter security should ease students because there will be less stress about people going into a school and doing awful things. There are many ways that this tragedy could have been avoided and none of them went into effect. The time to act, no matter what one’s opinion may be, is not the next time – it’s NOW.


NO (Jessie Reyes):

I personally think there should be less security around school, because it makes people feel very overwhelmed and think that they’re trapped in a place where they probably don’t even feel safe at all. Students feel distressed when they see people in uniform; armed figures makes them feel nervous or scared.

Many students perceive school security as a violation of privacy rights under the fourth amendment. Some parents and educators feel that surveillance will create more of an atmosphere that’s only based on having major authority. They’re not necessarily doing anything bad, but they perhaps feel that there should be another way that the school should remain secure.

Also, many feel that schools keep using deterrents like metal detectors or better security would be a waste of school budget when they should be focusing on other serious issues going around the school. Schools would waste even more money having a crew do the installation and making sure everything operates smoothly.




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