State superintendent addresses concerns after guns found at multiple schools

Published: Feb. 9, 2023 at 7:48 PM CST
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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - School safety is a priority for parents and educators. In the last week, guns have been found on at least two school campuses in our area. One of those guns was discovered at an Autauga County school. Now, the system has taken steps to increase school safety.

Just this week in Russell County the sheriff’s office says a student brought a handgun to a middle school. Authorities confirm a 15-year-old boy was arrested and charged.

Last week in Autauga County officials uncovered a gun at Prattville Junior High.

Following the incident, the school board approved a new clear bag policy for Prattville Junior High and Prattville High School students.

“There have been a lot of safety concerns with kids bringing things that are against policy.” said Kim Crockett, Autauga County school board District 2 representative.

“Unfortunately, we’ve had two or three situations around the state this year where students have brought guns to school,” said state Superintendent Eric Mackey.

Mackey says when it comes to safety plans there is not one state protocol it varies from school to school, but his office is there to offer support.

“Specifics of that each school is different. The entryways are different. Their processes and procedures are different,” said Mackey.

Mackey says while schools are working to keep students safe parents also have to do their part.

“We need parents to be partners and keep guns out of the hands of children and keep them out of our schools,” said Mackey.

”I would encourage parents to talk to children about what is acceptable behavior in a classroom setting and what is not,” said Crockett.

Mackey applauds Autauga County Schools quick response to the situation. On Feb. 21, the Autauga County School Board will officially announce when the clear bag policy will go into effect.

The school board chairman says they are also looking into ways of getting metal detectors into schools. They say they don’t have the funding right now.

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