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School Board Approves Safety Plan Following Student Suicide

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CHAPEL HILL — The Chapel Hill-Carrboro school board has a new plan to keep students safe. Ironically, that plan was voted on at Grey Culbreth Middle school, where a 13-year-old girl killed herself earlier this week.

The safe school plan, which passed Thursday night, contains a set of guidelines designed to prevent school violence. The plan doesn't, however, address how to keep students from bringing guns and other weapons to school.

The school board began it's meeting with a moment of silence for the 7th grader who brought a loaded gun to school and shot and killed herself in a bathroom.

As officials at Culbreth Middle School sought to return to a sense of normalcy, board members approved a plan designed to help keep schools safe. That includes:
  • Regular inspections of schools,
  • The assignment of police officers to high schools,
  • The installation of a computerized monitoring system for reporting acts of violence,
  • The enforcement of good behavior on school buses, and
  • More personal responsibility on the part of parents, teachers and students.
  • "It simply isn't the school personnel or the law enforcement agencies," says assistant superintendent Chester Preyar, "The entire community has to assume a greater degree of responsibility in that regard."

    The plan is designed to be a comprehensive guide for individual schools to follow. It's now up to each school to develop its own plan, and implement that plan by the 1998-99 school year.


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