GREENVILLE, S.C. (WSPA) – As parents and students work to heal from Thursday’s deadly Tanglewood Middle School shooting, the question now is how to make sure this doesn’t happen again.
Parents want immediate action from Greenville County Schools. They’re asking for clear bag policies and metal detectors. But some say the problem is a human one.
Community leaders are demanding the school district take action and install metal detectors.
“There has to be some form of action taken now,” Pastor Chuck Duckett said.
They say this is something they’ve been asking for since 2016.
“I think we have a lot of misplaced priorities in the educational sector that we need to correct,” community activist U.A. Thompson said.
A 2019 Department of Education report on school security shows at the time the Greenville County School District did not request any money for metal detectors.
For now, the district is reevaluating.
“We look at all possibilities of making school safer and more secure,” district spokesperson Tim Waller said.
A national school security expert said violence in schools has been on the rise
“Nationally were seeing an uptick in weapons possessions and weapons use on school grounds,” expert Ken Trump said.
He understands why parents would request additional technology security, but he said data does not show that it is effective.
“Metal detectors and other security technology may make people feel safer but that doesn’t necessarily mean that they would be safer because the devils in the details,” he said.
He said this would require full sealing on the first floor of schools and 24/7 patrols.
“I think it gives a false sense of security since weapons can still get through,” Waller said.
Even so, the community wants answers.
“It’s time up for thoughts and prayers. It’s time for action,” community activist Traci Fant said.