After 100 weapons found last school year, new safety measures expected for Clayton County Schools

CLAYTON COUNTY, Ga. — In just two short weeks, students are heading back to school in Clayton County.

Students will only be allowed to carry clear backpacks after more than 100 weapons were found on school property last year, throughout the district.

Channel 2′s Kristen Holloway spoke with district leaders and law enforcement to find out what else they are doing to keep students and staff safe this upcoming school year.

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Victoria David, a parent, says that after the tragedy in Uvalde, Texas safety and security for her seventh grader is top of mind.

“It was a tragedy — any parents heart would be broke,” David said.

After more than 100 weapons were found on school property last year throughout the Clayton County School District, Clayton County School chief of police, Reynard Walker, says a proactive approach was needed.

“Disappointing, however I just thought that what we needed to do was start making a proactive approach rather than a reactive approach to trying to locate guns or keeping guns off school grounds, period,” Walker said.

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The approach included only allowing clear backpacks, which will continue this year, along with weapon detection devices put in place at all high schools by the first day of school.

But now, Walker says his officers are trained by the alert response system.

“As soon as something happens there will not need to be a decision made by myself. Their job is to go to the threat,” Walker said.

For the next two days, 65 Clayton County law enforcements will be doing active shooter drills in hallways and inside the classrooms at Mundy’s Mill High School.

Clayton County director of community and employee engagement, Shakira Rice, says the district also established a “village on patrol.” This means, five parents or community members will be in each school, providing extra sets of eyes and ears to help ensure staff and students are safe.

“Once we have the orientation, training and a cleared background check, they work at the school sites and provide any service that the principles need at their buildings,” she said.

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