Jamaica’s Ministry of Education to conduct audit of metal detectors in schools

Kingston – The Ministry of Education has announced plans to conduct an audit of metal detectors in schools across the island, starting on Monday.

In making the announcement recently, Minister of Education Fayval Williams said the audit is to ensure that schools are equipped with the devices to detect weapons that may be used to cause harm during disputes.

This follows recent incidents in which two students were stabbed, one of them fatally at the William Knibb High School in the northern parish of Trelawny and the other at the Corporate Area based Excelsior High School.

In addition, several weapons have been confiscated from students since the full resumption of face-to-face classes.

The minister has called on school administrators to use metal detectors to help confiscate weapons from students.

She recommended that students found with dangerous weapons be referred for counselling.

“To the extent that our schools are able to take away a knife or scissors or other implements from students, it could save a life. We know that many of our students are coming from homes that are broken, that are toxic.

“Many of our students are suffering from trauma from the adults in the home. These are adults who should be protecting them but instead they’re causing them mental harm. And so we’re saying to our schools, it’s not enough to simply take away the implement, we must follow up with some counselling as well.”

Williams, who was speaking during a ‘Safety in Schools’ press briefing last week, said while the metal detectors will not solve all the problems, they will help to detect weapons and possibly save lives.

The mMinister said that 36 schools have been approved for metal detectors and, so far, the equipment has been set up in 27 of these institutions. (CMC)

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