Undoubtedly, every child across America deserves to feel safe in school. Schools are supposed to be welcoming and non-violent zones, but unfortunately, that has not been the case lately. The number of school shootings and gang-related violence is continuously rising and there is very little being done to stop it.
On December 11th, a 14-year-old student was slashed in the head by another student at Benjamin N. Cardozo High School in Bayside. The school followed protocol and proceeded to have a two hour lock-down. However, the slasher had already left the school and Cardozo school officials did not tell neighboring schools about the incident.
When asked about how he felt about the incident and if anything similar happened before, Jakob Herrera, a senior at Benjamin N. Cardozo High School, said “ I didn’t really care. Last year two girls got into a fight and one threw bleach at the other. It actually happened right in front of my classroom.”
Hanifa Rahman, a senior at Thomas A. Edison High School, said “I think our school does do a good job to keep students safe. Lately they’ve gotten better by administering more staff during lunch periods and such in order to prevent students from acting out.” However, she believes that other NYC Public Schools can do a better job by “hiring more staff that are qualified at handling students that are unhinged as well as any possible threats such as unsafe adults.”
However, another senior from Thomas A. Edison High School, Freddy Romero, said “I wouldn’t necessarily say that the school is dangerous but there’s still things that go on that may question the safety of the school.”
New York City Public School safety measures comprise of scanning, lock-downs and shelter-ins. However, all of these security measures have not always protected students. According to the New York Times, at the beginning of the 2018 school year, New York City Public Schools implemented a pilot program at a group of Bronx schools to turn school safety officers into “beat” cops. The school safety agents will be trained to discuss conflict between students and meet with the principal to discuss any suspicious behavior. Mayor Bill De Blasio and the Department of Education are working together to make public schools safer for kids all over the city. The question is, will discussing the conflict actually help solve the problems between students?