Home Secretary Jacqui Smith has announced that metal detectors will be used in some schools to try and prevent pupils bringing in knives. Like all ideas we need to think about how it could actually work in practise.
Let's assume that it takes on average 30 seconds per child (by the time they've triggered the damn thing with pencil sharpeners, belt buckles, watches etc and had to go through again, then triggered it again, then refused to go through it again, stormed off and returned with their mother who will want to complain about radiation, rights or something...)
Let's also assume that we are given two detectors so that we can use two entrances at the same time. With our 900 pupil school, we should be able to get everyone inside in just 3 hours and 45 minutes. So if we can make a prompt start at quarter to nine, then we will be finished by 12.30 just in time for lunch. Pupils found to be carrying knives will then be given a 20 minute detention. (Attendance optional)
Let's not hear any talk of ceramic knives, baseball bats, or chair legs and don't even think about windows or Fire Exits.
Mr Chalk sir!
Here is a copy of a post I put onto the Police Oracle forum earlier, on the same subject.
We are obviously of like mind!
The latest plan from the funny farm!
The Home Secretary, in an attempt to divert attention away from all the other stupid decisions she has made, has publicised plans to install metal detectors in hundreds of schools to combat knife crime.
So Mrs Smith, how will this be managed?
Will there be several hundred police officers on duty every morning at schools, staffing the detectors, to seize any weapons found and to deal with the carriers? I don't think so.
Will private security guards, with no powers of search, be used? Possibly - more money that will have to be found out of school budgets?
How about using the teachers, who do have delegated powers to search? Hang on - isn't their job to teach kids, not to frisk them before they get into lessons?
What a complete and utter waste of time and money this will be. It is a complete non-starter. Kids have been smuggling fags, booze and porn into school for years and will find a way to get knives past the detector. In fact, they don't need to, as there will be plenty of knives and other sharp objects in the Design department, so why bother bringing their own?
Somebody somewhere will make a fortune out of supplying these detectors and somebody else will get shafted with the responsibility of staffing the doors. It's a recipe for disaster!
Oh by the way, any chance of a spot on your blogroll?
I've said it before, and I probably will again. The question you've all got to ask yourselves is this: Why was there far less yobbish behaviour 50-60 years ago?
Answer: Children were treated as children and not encouraged to think of themselves as being the equal of their elders and betters. In addition they weren't given as many adult privleges, freedoms and responsibilities as they are today.
Furthermore, teachers and parents had more authority over their own children and students and were allowed to use discipline which young people were actually scared of getting. Yes, I'm talking about a good hard smack or the cane if need be. The fear of actual, physical bodily pain is far more effective than the thought of getting lines or a detention.
Also, think about this 50- 60 years ago would we have needed to instal metal detectors in most schools, would we have had this level of apauling behaviour from our young people? The answer is most definately, no. Now, ask yourself the reason why, although not perfect, discipline was far better back then and the poor bloody teachers could actually teach?
It's all very well saying times have moved on and we can't go back, but this is another way of making excuses and letting the little darlings get away with all their bad behaviour. There's an old saying, if something isn't broke don't fix it. Well, the system we had worked pretty well up until the liberal do-gooders got in and started ruining things. It's been proven the system we have now doesn't work, so I say let's go back to a system that did keep young people in check, and let's see if that enables teachers to be able to do some proper teaching for a change.
Stop trying to patch the problems of our young people up, and deal with the heart of the problem. In other words stop letting children think themselves the equal of adults, stop giving them so many freedoms and privleges until they reach the age of 18, and most of all bring back strict and effective discipline in schools, something which kids today might actually be afraid of!
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