The North Star

Students, staff recommend safety solutions

MaRaya White, In-Depth Editor

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According to the National Center for Education Statistics, 43 percent of public schools reported having one or more resource officers within their schools in 2013-2014. 

At Omaha North High, administration assures there’s always at least 3 security guards in the school building. 

Kelly Hill has worked in security for 25 years but has been at North for 13 years. Hill feels events such as school shootings happen because schools are easy targets for mass shootings. 

“It’s a place to where they feel like they’ll get the least amount of resistance. I hate to say it but it’s like shooting ducks in a barrel, it’s easy,” said Hill.  

Hill feels like actions can be implemented to help prevent tragic events from happening and to further protect students.  

“I feel like you should have to use your ID badges to get into the school,” said Hill.  

Students should feel protected by the fact that schools have strong security within the school. Hill feels security guards should have prior knowledge of the job going into schools.  

“Everyone thinks they know security, but they don’t know security. Your idea of security is just us standing in the hall, telling you to go to class and watching for fights but it’s a lot more than that. It’s relationships, its where you know me, you will feel more comfortable talking to me about something you know than someone else,” said Hill. 

Hill worked in other positions of security such as for the military, malls, and Lions Gate. He believes expectations are higher and the responsibility is greater with working in schools.  

“You have less reaction with people in the mall than in the school. The school is normally kids you going to see every day. It’s almost completely different,” said Hill. 

Raven Hollingsworth, junior feels school tragedies are an issue but will continue to be an issue.  

“I think the internet plays a major role in the outbreak of events happening within schools,” said Hollingworth. 

Hollingsworth feels stronger security is useless because the reasons are greater than not only school security but humans.  

“No one can prevent a gun. At the end of the day, I don’t feel like coming to my school where you’re supposed to be safe and having to go through metal detectors and I don’t want to see more security,” said Hollingworth.  

“To help prevent these events I think everyone needs to have an assembly and talk and put things in the air. Counseling needs to be better promoted rather than just going in there for social hour,” 

A select few teachers are also concerned with their own as well as student’s safety.  

Robert Hjelle has been at teacher at North for 11 years and feels that stronger security could be implemented but in urgent situations it comes down to a factor of chance. 

” I think there should be a card swipe outside of each and every classroom, so instead of using a clipboard, you’d have your ID and you’d quickly tap it on the scanner as you left and came back,” said Hjelle. 

Hjelle believes card swipes could limit the possibility of someone entering the school and going a rampage. 

“The safest gun, is a gun that’s not there,” said Hjelle.  

Also, Hjelle believes there are further steps that can be taken to better prepare teachers for situations where security guards may not be available.  

“We’re not even trained to break up fights. The district policy is that were supposed to wait for a security guard before we step in.,” said Hjelle. 

Although, it’s against district policy to step-in, most teachers find themselves defying the policies to defend students.  

“You have an understanding if were not trained in those situations, were not trained in self-defense skills,” said Hjelle. 

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Students, staff recommend safety solutions