District 186 Holds Special Board Meeting to Address Safety Issues | Best Stories

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WAND) – After Pierre Scott Jr., a student at Lanphier High School, was stabbed to death on school grounds, District School Board 186 held a special session to discuss the security measures.

Most of the meeting was held behind closed doors, but the first few minutes were open for public comment.

Two concerned family members of District 186 students spoke, including Mike Lopez, who said the violence affected everyone.

“A loss of life, a future of a young man of limitless opportunity has been taken away by violence. Many of us recognize that our students need us as teachers, administrators, parents and community leaders for them. help out, ”Lopez said.

Teresa Haley, president of Springfield NAACP and grandparent of a student in District 186, said the district needs more security measures.

“I’m asking the school district to say enough is enough. It’s time for us to do something different,” Haley said. “Let’s go ahead and get the metal detectors and chopsticks from the school.

Students have also called for more safety with school walkouts at Southeast, Lanphier and Springfield high schools on Friday, and now an online petition for metal detectors.

Superintendent Jennifer Gill said she was proud to see students use their voices to defend their beliefs.

“The voice of the students and this is something that we value and it is a lesson that I think we can learn that when you listen to the voice of the students it will help you to solve your problems and see your way forward. “she said.

Gill said the plan for the future is to make schools safer for the long term and get struggling students now to help immediately.

“We lost two students in this situation and it’s just sad,” said Gill. “We want to make sure that we are doing everything possible to support students socially and emotionally, and if a child still needs to talk, we have advocated in schools all week that if you need to talk to someone. ‘one, we have people there. “

The district has already started using metal detectors in schools and additional mental health resources remain available to students.

The next Education Council meeting will be on December 6.

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