Guns in Schools???

As a part of my “real” job, I go into high schools all over the southeast. Every single school I have been in is on lockdown. Doors are locked everywhere except the front doors which lead to the main office and all visitors must report to the office and have some sort of sticker/pass displayed on them in order to let every else know they have followed the procedure and are okay to be there. In addition, almost every school has at least one police officer/sheriff on site during school hours.

My point is that school safety has come a long way in the last 5 – 10 years all over Nashville and every where for that matter. So how do these incidents continue to happen?

From the Metro Nashville Police Department:

Youth Services detectives are investigating whether any adults have criminal culpability for having a pistol in a place that could be accessed by a six-year-old first grader.

The six-year-old placed the gun in his backpack and brought it to Cumberland Elementary School this morning. Another six-year-old casually asked a teacher if she wanted to see his friend’s gun. The teacher looked into the backpack, saw that it did indeed contain a pistol and notified police.

Given the first grader’s age, criminal charges against him are not expected, although the investigation is continuing. The student had apparently told a friend that he had access to a gun and was encouraged by the friend to bring it to class and show him.

The six-year-old said he got the loaded .380 semi-automatic pistol from a relative’s house.

And another example from this week:

Officers assigned to McGavock High School this afternoon charged two 15-year-old ninth graders with carrying the same gun on school property.

An assistant principal received information that one of the students had brought a pistol onto campus. The first teen was pulled out of class but did not have the gun. Further investigation revealed that he had exchanged backpacks with a friend. The second student was pulled out of class and the pistol was recovered from the backpack. It was not loaded and no bullets were recovered.

The original 15-year-old said he brought the gun to school for protection.

I want to be clear that I am not necessarily placing blame on school officials. I think the parents of these kids are certainly negligent to some extent, but maybe they are not 100% to blame either. Who we blame is secondary, in my opinion, to how we solve the problem. Any comments?

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