CMS to start new surprise security checks in 2019


CHARLOTTE, N.C. (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE) — This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Students across Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools go back to class Thursday and some will be met with a search of their backpack as CMS starts new surprise security checks in 2019. 

The ‘wanding’ will search for guns and other paraphernalia that could put the school at risk. The searches will be random, but on a regular basis. Backpacks will also be randomly searched. 

Related: CMS announces new security measures 

This change comes after Bobbie McKeithen, 16, was shot and killed October 29, 2018 in the hallway of Butler High School. He was laid to rest a week later. Fellow classmate, Jatwan Cuffie, 16, is facing murder charges in connection to the deadly shooting that rocked the school. 

More: Charges reduced for teen accused of shooting classmate at Butler High School 

The shooting was just one of at least half a dozen gun incidents at CMS in the first half of the school year. 

Airport-style metal detectors were also considered, but back in November Superintendent Dr. Clayton Wilcox said that wasn’t feasible. 

Related: Wand checks to take place as part of upgraded security at CMS schools

Additional security changes include camera monitoring, panic cards for teachers, and hiring more guidance counselors, social workers, and psychologists. 

“CMS is making security changes as announced on November 16 to help keep students and staff safe at school. CMS workers and contractors continue to install safety equipment, upgrade security technologies and update crisis procedures. Preparations for safety screenings at randomly selected schools, including wanding and bag checks, are moving forward thoughtfully to both enhance safety at school and protect the rights of students. Extensive communications are planned so that all students, families, staff know what to expect when security screenings begin in the coming weeks. The district will share detailed updates as this work continues.” -Statement from CMS

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