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Franklin, Do You Feel Safe?

Lorraine, Writer

On Tuesday, November 30, 2021, the nation was struck with a tragedy. Four students lost their lives as a result of a school shooting at Oxford High School in Michigan. This event has stirred up a lot of feelings for students all over America; this isn’t the first time that students have gone to school and have been put in danger. On Monday, December 13, 2021, Franklin High School was hit with a similar scare as one of our neighboring schools was under threat. Messages were sent to students that attend a neighboring high school that someone was going to bring in a gun and was going to open fire. Franklin took precaution; by the afternoon the Franklin Police were at school. FHS administration was on alert and assured students that they were safe. But did the students actually feel safe and protected? That was a whole different story.

Franklin's Library Taken by Michael

Students were interviewed anonymously about their feelings on gun safety and safety at Franklin High School. When asked if they believed that an event like Oxford could ever occur at Franklin, some said yes. One student said, “Yes, absolutely. I think it’s just something that there’s a possibility for that to happen at any school.” When the same student was asked about how they felt earlier this week on Monday they responded, “ I thought it was just kind of ridiculous because there was a lot of misinformation going around.” The student was referring to rumors from peers that the threat was against Franklin High School rather than the other school involved. The student also expressed how this event has opened their eyes and realized how truly disgusting the whole situation was.

Another student expressed how they felt that they couldn’t really tell if things at Franklin were ever serious or just a joke. When asked to elaborate they said, “Even though things are getting better and police are getting involved, there’s always that chance of something bad happening here.”

Another student expressed how the tragedy at Oxford completely changed his view of school. “Four significant lives were taken just like that. It could be any day, any time, at any given second.”

When asked if they felt that the right measures had been taken to protect the students after Monday, all of the students said that they believed that the school was going in the right direction because more police were stationed around the school. They also felt that the staff was also very “hands on” with students and asked how they were feeling and about their well being.

Others, however, did not feel the same way. One student, when asked if he felt that staff was doing enough to help support students mentally and alleviate fears of a shooting, responded, “Honestly I don’t know because I don’t see adults going up to kids like that and just like having a serious conversation. Adults don’t take kids seriously.” The student thinks that the school could do something anonymous where students could explain and express their stressors and hardships, and that this would help tremendously, as well as check-ins with counselors.

Many students feel unseen and unheard and want someone to reach out to. Making Franklin feel safer would require help from the community and from the administration. It’s a joint effort, everyone has to pitch in to make this a better environment.

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