Recent drug sweep at Selma High School adds to the answers needed from school leaders

Published 9:34pm Thursday, February 28, 2013

We are beyond thankful Dr. Udo Ufomadu, a member of the Selma City School Board, provides a regular column to the newspaper.

His insight as one of our school leaders is important to share, and we appreciate the time he takes to share his thoughts and insight with us, our readers, his constituents and the parents of school children in Selma.

This week, Dr. Ufomadu commented on the recent lockdown and police department sweep of the school. In his column he said, “What was more remarkable was the fact that during last Tuesday’s drills, which lasted for almost two hours, no weapons were found and an insignificant amount of marijuana was discovered. The outcome of the drill tells me a whole lot.”

We agree. The outcome of the drill does tell us a whole lot.

It tells us — once you combined the magically appearing gun found on campus in December and this “insignificant” amount of marijuana — that there is something wrong with the so-called security measures at the new $30 million Selma High School.

In both cases, no one can answer for where the drugs or the gun came from. In the case of the drugs, it appears they too magically appeared, because no one was tied to their presence at school.

We join Dr. Ufomadu in applauding the efforts of school leaders and officials with the Selma Police Department for partnering to ensure our schools are safe, secure and drug-free. We agree that this lockdown should be just part of an overall program that ensures our schools are a place where education is the focus.

Where we diverge a little bit from Dr. Ufomadu is the classification of the drugs found as “insignificant.” It is our opinion, and we hope the opinion of those in charge of our schools, that any drugs not prescribed by a physician and any stronger than a Tylenol are considered “significant.”

For months now we have sought answers to questions we’ve had about December’s discovery of a .380 handgun in a student’s backpack at Selma High School. Only half of our questions have been answered. Apparently school leaders are trying to discover ways to avoid our questions instead of discovering just how a chrome-plated handgun — one that was reportedly pointed in the face of another student in a bathroom — made its way through security guards and metal detectors. Then again, we’re probably being a little touchy.

We know there are great stories to tell about Selma High School, the Selma City School System, their students, their administrators and their staff. But, we can’t get past that funny feeling in our stomach that something is wrong, when all of these little things keep popping up and no answers are ever provided.

We wonder what answers we’d get if we asked more about the reported investigation of a teacher and a student having an inappropriate relationship.

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