Schools create safe spaces amid gun violence, but students want more security : NPR

The students at North Community High School in Minneapolis have seen a lot. Some things, morbid curiosities: a bullet, freshly fired, spinning and melting the rubber on the track surrounding the school’s football field.

Others, much more painful: the murder of Deshaun Hill Jr., shot and killed two years ago just blocks from the school. He was 15 years old, and the quarterback of the football team.

Across the country, millions of young people are enduring this same reality: Firearm injuries are the leading cause of death for children and teens over age 1 nationwide.

The federal government is investing billions of dollars to combat this problem. But on the north side of Minneapolis, some students living under the threat of gun violence say there’s a disconnect between what the government is offering and what they say they need

Full story: Schools create safe spaces amid gun violence, but students want more security : NPR

11 Replies to “Schools create safe spaces amid gun violence, but students want more security : NPR”

  1. Violence, especially gun violence is a huge problem within our school systems. It is prevalent which is scary to think about. School is supposed to be a safe place for children to learn and grow among their peers. A child should not have to worry about whether or not they will be home for dinner after they get on the bus and head to school in the morning. So what can we do about it? Are the grants and funding coming from the government going to fix the problem? As mentioned in the article, the problem needs to be approached in a sense that we stop it before it happens. Community programs, housing, etc are things that need to be focused on as they can help change the trajectory of the lives within. This is a present and very real problem that needs to be looked into. How can we make schools a safe learning environment where children can be comfortable and encouraged to succeed without having to look over their shoulders?

    1. I completely agree that students should not have to worry about getting home. We definitely need programs like that! I also agree that we need to stop it before it happens! Great job with your response!

  2. Simply giving money to address issues like weapons in schools or drug prevention isn’t really going to solve the problem from the root up, as stated in the article. While financial resources are crucial and beneficial, they should be appointed effectively to tackle the root causes. Weapons in schools and drug abuse are complex societal issues deeply rooted in social, economic, and cultural factors. Throwing money at these problems overlooks the necessity for strategies that can involve education, community engagement, mental health support, and law enforcement measures. Beneficial solutions will need proactive approaches such as intervention programs and other initiatives. Fighting these issues will require a number of interventions that go way beyond monetary means.

    1. I completely agree with what you said about intervention programs as well as the fact that just throwing money at the problem will not fix the deeper rooted issues. What kind of programs do you think could be started or funded in order to work towards safer schools and communities as a whole? Should we start outside of the school system and work our way into the everyday running of schools or should we focus on schools first and let effects flow out? Which direction would be most beneficial? Would communities as a whole be open to changes and programs such as these or would they be faced with challenges?

      1. I would think that programs such as mentorship initiatives, after-school programs, and those that address socioeconomic disparities, amongst others, would be incredibly beneficial. These kinds of programs could build positive relationships that kids can be a part of in case their home life is the opposite.
        I also think we should focus on schools first, as they kind of serve as a hub of learning. There’s a lot of interaction, and for some kids, it’s the only kind of interaction they’ll get due to a less-than-ideal home life. Starting with schools and allowing those effects to flow is beneficial, as schools have a huge part in shaping a young person’s mind. If we prioritize their safety while also encouraging their education and interaction with their community, those positive changes can kind of spread from there, hopefully impacting families, neighborhoods, and neighboring communities.

      2. Hey Rebecca! Great response, I agree with directly working with the communities to solve the issue. This is something I alluded to in my response but I agree that it would definitely make a big difference!

    2. You make a good point about this being a societal issue. I think a large reason this issue is so bad is because these crimes are not just happening to those involved in gang activity, innocent children are being affected by this. Although it is still tragic at least if the violence stayed within gang to gang settings it would be easier to control. And I agree, money is not everything. Community leaders need to be looking at the specific needs in their community and allocating those funds in a way that actually solves the problem. Money is nothing without an effective plan and leaders that are really getting to the bottom of the issue.

  3. This is a really hot topic right now. But taking the school resource officer out of schools is definitely a step in the wrong direction if it was up to me I’d put 2 per school. But I definitely agree that we need to definitely need ways of protecting our students and I say we can’t be to safe!

  4. This is a super important topic and concern for the last few years and I wonder why the factors that lead to violence are not being tackled more strongly? Often school shootings and violence occur when a student is bullied or is facing abuse in their home life, there should be more resources going towards ensuring that students are being directed to resources that help them deal with at home abuse. While issues in school are a big factor, it cannot be overlooked that a negative home life can be very destructive for a students wellbeing and that offering programs that help students be removed or improve their home life would definitely help cut down violence.

    1. Mateo, I agree that this is an important topic. We have a cultural and societal issue in the United States when it comes to education. We have trouble providing good education whilst turmoil such as shootings are occurring, in addition to issues a student may be facing at home. I think that more outreach, rather than extended security could help issues similar to this, but there is not a single solution to an issue of this magnitude.

  5. The article focuses on the everyday experiences that kids at North Community High School have with gun violence in Minneapolis, ranging from discovering gunshots on school property to a 15-year-old quarterback’s murder. Students emphasize the need for more comprehensive security measures and resources addressing core reasons like poverty because they feel detached from solutions despite federal efforts. The Biden administration’s initiatives, which include financing for mental health specialists, are designed to address these issues. However, concerns over physical safety are raised by the lack of police presence in schools. Students look for assistance from people who sympathize with their situation and support a sensible approach to security. The effects of gun violence on mental health and academic achievement highlight the need for more community investments and preventive measures. The story ends on a positive note for the future as s students prepare for college, reflecting on lost opportunities and the ongoing struggle for lasting change.

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