A New Take on Student Security


LHS Administration

A map released by Lafayette’s administration that shows where students must enter the school building.

Emma Taylor, Editor-in-Chief

After the chaos that erupted on the morning of September 12th, Lafayette High School immediately stopped doing bag searches to re-evaluate their plan. Lines that reached out to the band lot and to the sidewalk of Reed Lane created an unsafe environment for students. These long lines also made many students late for class, some of them reaching their first block classroom at 9 AM. This was deemed unacceptable by students, parents, and staff. The feedback from everyone involved agreed that the bag search day was absolutely horrendous. Since the day after the first full bag search day, Lafayette students have returned back to the procedure of going through the metal detectors without their bags being searched.

On Tuesday, September 24th, Lafayette administration sent an email to all students and parents regarding a new safety procedure for entering school in the morning.  This email detailed a three phase plan that is set to span over the next few weeks. Beginning this Thursday morning, the 26th, students will enter the building differently. All 2,300 students must enter school through the gym and go through metal detectors that are now set up on the gym floor. Students may only enter through the gym doors that face the tennis courts. This includes students that typically ride the bus and enter through the bus foyer. The school states that these new morning procedures will give students shelter in the case of inclement weather.

Once students are adjusted to entering through the gym foyer doors, the second phase will be implemented, starting October 1st and 2nd. This new phase is bag checks. As mentioned in a previous article, The Illusion of Safety, bag checks didn’t flow smoothly. Even with weeks of preparation, the bag checks were still too time-consuming and had a negative effect on the school’s environment and culture. Now that students are all entering through one area, it’s anticipated by students that bag checks will still be time-consuming, perhaps even longer with every student going through one entry. Students have been advised by administration to cut down on the amount of separate containers they keep in their bags.

If the bag check phase beats the odds and are somehow a success, the next phase will be implemented. This phase will be turning on metal detectors. The metal detectors are in hopes, to be turned on around mid-October. This phase has never been implemented into Lafayette’s daily routine, so it is unsure what the instant effects of turning them on will be. The email also explains that their commitment to the safety of students and staff is administration’s main priority, but is bringing Lafayette’s 2,300+ students through one area all that safe? This brings the idea of “sitting ducks” back to the table. Just because students are being brought indoors, doesn’t mean they aren’t sitting ducks. Changing the entry point for the sake of “inclement weather” may not be the safest and most efficient way for students to enter the building.

Students have a day to prepare for, what can only be seen by them as, inevitable chaos. It is only hoped that this new procedure will help students and their daily routine more than it will hurt them.