MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – The recent uptick in mass shootings in schools across the country has educators trying to find ways to ensure safety in the classroom.

Right here in West Virginia, Monongalia County Schools are taking steps to further ensure student safety. The Board of Education made the decision to buy weapon detectors for the county’s three public high schools.

Morgantown High, University High and Clay-Battelle students will all have to be screened by the weapon detectors when going into school in the fall.

The decision comes around the same time as a mass shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas. However, Mon. County Schools Superintendent Ed Campbell said this purchase has been in the works for a while.

Superintendent Campbell said the weapon detectors won’t hold up traffic when screening students and mentioned that schools can get more uses out of them because they are portable. Not only will schools place them at their front entrances when kids get off the bus and head into school at the beginning of the day, but they also have the option to move them and put them out at events such as football games to ensure safety. 

Superintendent Campbell said there’s nothing more important than the safety of students and the staff in schools and that these detectors will help them meet the needs of their schools.  

“We need to be able to create a learning environment where kids and teachers feel safe doing what it is that they’re there for, and that’s to learn. And so, we are constantly looking at what we can do to upgrade the security of our buildings and our facilities,” Campell said.  

It is not clear how much the Board of Education spent on the weapon detectors.

The detectors were tested out in schools in the spring but will be made permeant in the three high schools in the fall. Campbell said they will see how it goes and consider if they need to put weapon detectors in other schools later.