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State, School Officials: School Metal Detectors Create the Illusion of Safety

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Friday, December 14, 2012 at 6:43 PM

Three students were killed after a shooting inside the Chardon High School cafeteria in February.

Three students were shot and killed at Chardon High School in February. WCPN's Michelle Kanu spoke with the superintendent of the Chardon school district today about school safety.

Superintendent Joseph Bergant told WCPN he doesn't think metal detectors are the answer.

"I certainly wouldn't recommend anyone to put metal detectors and things of that nature because those don't work either. It's more of an illusion," he said.

Bergant suggested there are better ways of preventing school shootings like the ones in Chardon and Newtown, Conn.

"It's everybody paying attention to their surroundings, paying attention to things that look different and reporting that," he said.

[audio href="" title="Chardon Superintendent Says Metal Detectors Are Not the Answer"]Paying attention to environment and people are the answer, he says.[/audio]

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine agreed. Metal detectors and armed guards are not a guarantee that schools will be safe, he told Ohio Public Radio.

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"If you put up metal detectors in every school in the state and put armed guns there, I suppose you'd pretty much make sure there wouldn't be any guns coming into the building," De Wine said. "But there could be other ways of problems occuring."

A 2004 federal report found that the odds of a child being killed at school are no greater than 1 in a million.

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