Jan 15, 2015 9:44 PM

Survey: Guns, other weapons being brought inside Dover High School


DOVER - Results of a recent youth risk behavior survey at Dover High School said that students have admitted to bringing guns and other weapons inside the school.

The survey is administered annually to students in the Dover school district. This year, the results regarding personal safety were eyeopening - and the Mayor is now openly expressing deep concern.

"One gun is one too many," Mayor Karen Weston said.

Weston said a Safety Committee will now review the results to determine how to move forward.

The answers to the annual survey were revealed at Monday night's school board meeting.

The statistics showed that 15% of seniors claimed to have brought a non-firearm weapon into the school - such as a knife or club.

In addition, about 5% of sophomores said they had brought a gun into the school facility over the past 3 months.

Other students said they have even brought rifles and shotguns into the building.

"It's a big concern - you'd like to send your kids to school and you assume that they're going to be safe," said Kim Seckendorf, who's daughter attends the high school. "And to find out that students are admitting to actually bringing guns into school is a pretty scary thought."

But students said they didn't believe the survey results - and said many of their peers probably falsified answers.

"I don't think it's true at all," senior Jessica Myers said of the results. "It's just stupid, but everyone lies and exaggerates."

Whether students answered truthfully or not - administrators are taking it seriously.

Dover School Board Chair Amanda Russell released the following statement:

"Student safety is a priority in the Dover School District. In 2013, the Safety Review Committee was formed. This is a collaborative group of district employees as well as law enforcement and local fire and rescue. The committee meets regularly to discuss the security and safety needs of the district.

The results of the 2014 student survey show that the majority of our students, approximately 96%, feel safe in our buildings and on their way to and from school. It is, of course, concerning that even one student would report bringing any type of weapon into our schools. The district encourages and is proud that students come forward if they see or hear of something unsafe. All reports are taken seriously are addressed immediately. The district collaborates with law enforcement on any investigation regarding safety issues.

Having information from our students helps the district to address any instructional or security needs. The district began to address areas of concerns brought forth in the survey over the summer and implemented changes in curriculum to help to educate and inform our students."


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