EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – The shooting at a private school in Nashville is raising questions about the safety on campuses, and a local charter school superintendent said more should be done to invest into school security.
This is one of the rare shootings that happened at a private school.
According to a 2018 Cato Institute study, 94% of school shootings have happened in public schools while the rest were in private.
Though many factors affect these statistics, one of them is that there are more public schools than private ones in the U.S., according to the study.
National Center for Education Statistics numbers show that from 2019 to 2020 there were 30,492 private schools, 7,547 charter schools and 98,469 public schools.
Burnham Wood Charter Schools Superintendent Dr. Joe Gonzales explained parents usually enroll their children into charters or private schools for safety reasons.
“The parents are looking for a place that has little or no gang activity and has safety. Parents are also looking for a place that is small enough and that it can be properly taken care of to provide safety for the children,” Gonzales said.
In the past couple of years, Gonzales said they invested in higher fences around the campus and self-closing gates that are guarded all around.
His mission is to secure the exterior of the campus first so it’s harder to access the classrooms.
The Nashville shooter reportedly entered the interior of the school despite the usual practice to have all of the doors locked.
“There’s too many exterior doors to have them locked all the time and that somebody didn’t forget. Leave it open, put a rock in it. I’m bringing in paint, I’m bringing in something, forget to lock them. You have to stop at the exterior,” Gonzales explained.
He believes more funding should be provided for schools to upgrade their safety features, especially exterior ones.
Gonzales has also been a proponent of making guns available to teachers inside classrooms to defend themselves.
“We need to be able to fight back,” he said.
“It’s easy to go in and have a bunch of lambs that can’t defend themselves and can’t do a thing about it and you are a bad guy with a gun and hurt everybody. It’s not too easy if you think you can get hurt yourself,” he added.
He said he has been getting positive reactions to this idea and that he will be proposing it to the school board.
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