How is Ridge Making the Campus Safer?


What is the administration doing to make Ridge safer?

In light of the recent Parkland shooting, Mountain Ridge has been taking action to make the campus safer. The results from a survey showed that approximately 40% of the polled students felt unsafe at Mountain Ridge.

Teachers were informed of the new safety measures, but students are still unaware of the changes in access made to the campus. Changes include:

Seniors must leave campus through the push gate between E and F, as there is no push gate between E and D.

1. Seniors with a late arrival can enter campus through the push gate between E and F, if they arrive on time. A security team member should be monitoring the gate, but in the case that the gate is unsupervised, seniors must enter campus through the front office.

2. All students who arrive late will need to enter through the front office.

3. Seminary students must leave campus through the push gate between CC and maintenance, but will reenter campus through the front office.


What do students think the school should do to make Ridge safer?

Many students appreciate the action that the school has taken to make the campus safer, such as locking the gates after the start of school. Students were interviewed and asked what other changes they would like to see enforced to make the school safer. Some responses include:

1. “Schools should do drills for school shooting like they do fire and lock down drills. This will help students know what to do if a person really tries to shoot the school.”

2. “I do not feel safe at school because I feel like many kids can sneak in dangerous substances, or weapons and teachers don’t notice it because kids have gotten smarter in hiding their things. I suggest random backpack searches, and teachers should be more aware.”

3. “I think teachers should be taught self-defense to prepare for possible attacks inside classrooms.”


What can we do now?

We must start a discussion in schools on the safety of schools and the dangers that are presented by the lack of protection and preparation. The situation is often only discussed in the few weeks after a school shooting, but ends soon after. Right now, we are reactive rather than proactive, but it has to be the other way around.

An important observation that must be taken into consideration is the disconnect between student and administration responses. The administration proposed changes to keep potential shooters out of the campus, but students were more concerned about the dangers inside of campus. Students seem to find it inevitable that weapons will be carried into campus and propose solutions to defend themselves from attackers. Some students still feel unsafe at school because they want the comfort of knowing they could defend themselves in a situation where they had to.

Despite remaining student concerns, the administration has taken vital steps to make our campus safer. Looking to the future, the students’ solutions may also be taken into consideration by administration.