Clark County School District Superintendent Jesus Jara announced Friday random searches of students will begin at middle and high schools to discourage weapons on campus.
“No weapons will be tolerated on our campuses,” Jara said.
According to him, 11 firearms have been taken away from students since the beginning of the school year compared to five at the same time last year. In one case, a student was shot and killed at Canyon Springs High School on Sept. 11.
“As a father who has sent students, my own children to public school. I know that nothing is more important than the safety of our students and staff in Clark County School District,” Jara said. “When our parents and guardians kiss their children goodbye in the morning, they must feel confident that our schools are safe places to learn and grow.”
The searches will begin this month and will be done as students are arriving on campus. CCSD Police Department officers will be present at the school as administrators use hand-held metal detectors to search students and classrooms.
The district will use a random computer program to select the schools and classrooms that will be searched weekly. The district says this is an effort to prevent profiling and let students know that at any time they could be searched.
CCSD says there are measures in place to ensure privacy if more than a basic search is required.
“We ask parents to check their child’s backpack before they head off to school for the day, and we also ask adults to secure weapons at home to prevent them from getting into the wrong hands,” said CCSD Police Chief Jim Ketsaa.
Jara said the district is also working with a group of principals, police officers, and community leaders on other safety issue recommendations that will be presented to the school board by Dec. 1.
(Watch the entire news conference)