Metal Detectors at Lafayette?


Lily Cruse

The bus foyer doors and a possible location for metal detectors.

Olivia Adams, Opinions Editor

In March 2018, after mass school shootings in Florida and one in Kentucky, the district made a decision to implement metal detectors in Fayette County Public Schools. The intention was and is to keep Lexington students safe, at all costs. The first school to receive metal detectors was Frederick Douglass High School, largely as a result of an incident there where a student shot himself in the hand, and partly due to the fact that it was the easiest site to install the necessary equipment. Our own Lafayette High School will be getting metal detectors before spring break.

Videos and pictures depicting the long lines at Frederick Douglas as a result of the metal detectors have been circulating on student social media accounts, and the reality of what metal detectors will mean for the school is beginning to dawn on Lafayette students, most of whom seem to not like it. One student, Maya Farrell, says, “I feel like it’s going to take forever to make transitions happen in general, and it’s pretty unnecessary”.

If it took 2 minutes for each student to be scanned and searched, it would take over an hour for 2ooo students to get through. Note that Lafayette has over 2000 students, closer to 2400. If it only took 1 minute for every student to be searched, students would still be waiting for at least 30 minutes. Will this interfere with our class times? Will we have to start waking up earlier? Will it allow enough time for students (who really need it) to get in and eat breakfast from the cafeteria?

And who wants to stand outside in the cold for that long? What does this mean for our safety? Surely a large crowd of students waiting in the bus lot isn’t a good idea. Agitation due to impatience and the weather could lead to more fights, and violence in general. Not to mention that a large, cramped crowd of students is an easy target for a school shooter. Who’s to say that a kid won’t get off the bus with a gun and start targeting the crowd? What would happen then? Would we be protected? Or would police officers be too busy scanning and searching students?

These are the questions Lafayette students are beginning to ask. As the time for getting metal detectors draws nearer, more concerns are rising. While it’s clear that more safety measures need to be taken, and that most students are grateful for the new efforts towards this, some ideas are just better on paper. All we can do now is wait and see how this one meets reality.