With the hassle of getting out the door in the morning, rush-hour traffic, and school parking, would having to get through metal detectors just an additional excuse for why a student is be late to school?
In light of recent school shootings, public and private high schools around the country have set up metal detectors to increase student safety and to prevent further occurrences of these incidents. As of right now, MCPS has not.
However, with the increasing amounts of school shootings, MCPS and other counties, need to start installing metal detectors.
According to a study conducted by the American School Health Association, metal detector use is linked to a decrease in the likelihood that students reported carrying a weapon in school to begin with.
Although some may view metal detectors as a costly and unnecessary purchase, they have the potential to save lives. A purchase that could increase the safety of students, should always come first. When schools continue to ignore the need for metal detectors, they are only putting their students in danger.
MCPS schools pride themselves on being a place where all students feel welcome and safe. WCHS has recently practiced several drills supposedly aimed at protecting students from the possibility of a school shooting. However one or two practiced school evacuations where students get out of class for a few minutes and walk calmly to the parking lot does little to protect students. Instead of rehearsing what to do in the event of school shootings, our first priority should be preventing them from ever occurring in the first place.
Because many of WCHS’s neighboring schools do not have metal detectors, it may seem like they are not truly a necessity. But according to The Washington Post, every middle and high school in the District’s traditional public school system now has metal detectors.
As for those worried about how metal detectors could make their commute to school less efficient, they should instead be contemplating what they would be risking for an extra 5 minutes in the morning.
In order to create a safe school environment, MCPS schools, and all public schools around the country, need to purchase metal detectors because every day that schools put off installing metal detectors is another day that a student could walk into school with a gun.