Is school safety a thing of the past?


Sam Hicks and Sally Niebergall

According to a VUSD report, on Thursday August 23, a former Ventura County high school student indicated the desire to commit a shooting at an undetermined high school in Ventura County. This caused many students to fear attending school and prompting some to not come.

This creates the question: do Ventura High School students feel safe at school in an era of school shootings?

An online twitter poll showed that only 30 percent of the voters feel safe at school. This leaves 49 percent of voters who only feel safe sometimes and 21 percent who never feel safe.

Is this the new norm for students of Ventura High School, and what can be done to help secure student safety?

This led us to wonder what students believe create a school shooter. Senior Carlos Aviles states, “To me the leading cause of school shootings [is] that people [are] afraid to express their feeling[s] and are too scared or proud to [get] help because they are scared of being made fun of or are scared people would judge them negatively for reaching out for help.” This directly relates to the recent mental health budget cuts, made by president Donald Trump, making it even harder for people to access mental health treatment programs.

Junior Kailey Garcia (not pictured) said, “I think the leading cause of school shootings is our poor gun laws in the U.S. It’s too easy to obtain a gun.” Photo by: Sam Hicks

When asked if the recent threat of a school shooting in our area scared her, junior Kaja Boas stated, “The recent school shooting threat made me a little nervous, however, I wasn’t necessarily scared.” Boas then goes on to say, “I came to terms with the fact that this kind of event would always be a possibility for our school district.”

Is this the new reality for high school students of this era: having to expect and “come to terms” with the possibility of experiencing a school shooting, and what does this say about American culture today?