School board expels student that brought gun on campus

Published 10:38 pm Thursday, February 12, 2009

The Selma City School Board voted unanimously to expel the student who was arrested for bringing a gun to Selma High School on Feb. 4.

The No Child Left Behind Act requires a minimum expulsion of 365 days for any student who brings a weapon onto campus.

Police officers arrested the 16-year-old male student for unlawful possession of a concealed weapon and carrying a weapon on school property after finding a 9-millimeter handgun in his bag. Both charges are Class C felonies under the Code of Alabama. The teenager was taken to the juvenile detention center.

Email newsletter signup

School board President Barbara Stapp-Hiouas said she is confident Principal Wanda McCall is doing everything within her power to protect Selma High students.

Stapp-Hiouas mentioned the recent decline in incidents at the school reported to the chief probation officer as a positive sign.

“There’s a lot of work to be done,” she said. “But we’re working on it.”

Superintendent Dr. Austin Obasohan said the school system works hard to adapt in order to keep its students safe.

“I’m very confident our school is safe,” Obasohan said.

Board member the Rev. Coley Chestnut credited Selma High students, too. While no school is ever completely safe, Chestnut said threats have been thwarted thanks to students.

“The kids police themselves,” Chestnut said. “Many of these potential tragedies have been avoided because the students want to be safe.”