Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Minority students in a high-poverty neighborhood are more likely to pass through a metal detector on the way to class than their better-off and white peers are

Researchers have found that high-poverty schools were much more likely to use security mechanisms such as surveillance cameras, full-time guards and drug-sniffing dogs, and that the racial makeup of the student enrollment was a powerful predictor of whether the school would use metal detectors. Schools with more students of color are more likely to get metal detectors, at every level, even elementary levels. Schools with higher concentrations of poor students were more likely than their better-off counterparts to have a full-time security or policy officer, drug-sniffing dogs, locked gates in elementary schools, and metal detectors in middle school. The percentage of minority students in a school strongly predicted whether it would use metal detectors at all grade levels. However, all schools with highly involved parents were less likely to use metal detectors and more likely to favor a security officer on campus. The intensity of the security is very much dependent upon what experiences the school has had. You’re not going to find metal detectors in a school that has not experienced any violence or any times of students’ trying to bring weapons into the school.

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