Opinion: New Safety Precaution


Entrance of Rangeview High School. (Photo Credit- Nataly Leon)

Nataly Leon, Opinion Reporter

Living in fear in our day to day lives is no way to live. But living in a community where violence is increasing amongst our community is something we have to live with. This fear is based on several acts of violence throughout schools in the U.S. and within our community. The constant thought is, “are we next?” and are we doing enough to help the community and be safe. 

The year of 2021 has been filled with fear of COVID and several other things, but in the past month our fear has been violence in schools. Recently, our community was attacked by violence with shootings at Aurora Central High School, Hinkley High School and several other shootings towards teens in Aurora. 

Shooting at Hinkley High School, the second shooting in less than a week after Aurora Central High School. (KDVR)

These shootings have increased safety precautions at Rangeview High School and other APS high schools with the concern of being targeted. Superintendent Rico Munn gave out a statement, “Starting tomorrow, Monday, Nov. 29, all of our high school students will not be allowed to leave our high school campuses during the school day to reduce the number of unsupervised students outside our buildings. This means that students may not leave high school campuses during the school day, including lunch. Students may bring their lunches or pick up a meal through our school lunch program.” 

With this statement several students have been shocked and have raised concerns. With these new safety precautions there has been concern if schools are doing enough, if they’re not doing enough, and if this precaution is going to make things worse.

The new precaution means no one can leave campus and with this, is it going to make  the COVID situation worse? And is it going to make the situation in general worse? When thinking about what it means, tons of people are going to be crowded in one area without masks. 

“Most of the discussion around the spread of SARS-CoV-2 has concentrated on the average number of new infections caused by each patient. Without social distancing, this reproduction number (R) is about three,” stated Science.org. 

With several people being in a room together and not being able to leave, COVID cases will most likely increase without the correct precautions.

Although this mandate is keeping us safe, it’s taking the freedom of students. Most students don’t eat lunch at school with a preference of eating out and having the freedom of going to walk somewhere. This freedom allows students not to feel trapped inside the building for eight hours a day.

“I think it’s dumb… like really dumb, especially for the students who have an off period during 4th period, like sitting here in the cafeteria for an hour long feels like three hours long, it’s so bad and then there’s so many people, you have people sitting on the floor and you got to eat school food which is nasty,” said RHS Senior Brandon Barlow. 

This new safety precaution should be adjusted to allow for student input. Administration should allow students to go get food off campus, most students take all lunch period to get food, so they wouldn’t be in the perimeters of the school. 

“I don’t like it because they still let us go outside, but not pass the 50 yard line as if we can’t get [harmed] from there,” said RHS Sophomore Stephanie Karr, who believes these restrictions could be made into something that suits everyone. 

Being a well known school district the news of the new precautions have been spread out through Colorado news. Several large news sites like 9news and the Denver Channel have covered what is happening throughout the district. With this widespread news coverage people will be informed of what is happening, causing people to know where students are at all times, making it unsafe. “I don’t think it really helps, I mean they just let anybody in the school they don’t really check ID’s,” said RHS Junior Emmalee Wool Wine. 

The precaution of having students leave campus by 3:45 is a good precaution that is put in because students usually bunch up together at the end of the day. By enforcing this precaution, students will have to leave as soon as possible without having the chance to crowd up.

The new safety mandates are restrictive towards students, causing them to feel trapped, but it is putting the students in consideration after the violence towards our community. “I think [the new safety protocol] is good because it’s good to take precaution with the safety concerns around our community, so I would say it’s good that we all work together. I know it’s something that’s kind of sad, stressful and brings a lot of anxiety. It also lets us be united, but we have to come together to all do it together,” said RHS Mr. Gonzalez.