HORRY COUNTY, S.C. (WBTW) — Horry County Schools is reflecting on safety measures after a 12-year-old shot and killed another 12-year-old Thursday at Tanglewood Middle School in Greenville County.
Lisa Bourcier with Horry County Schools said the district has metal detectors, metal wands, security cameras, screening systems, armed officers and more to help with safety.
“The incident that happened at Tanglewood middle school is certainly tragic and it’s each school district’s worst nightmare to have something like that happen so of course safety and security is always at the forefront of any school system,” Bourcier said.
“For some reason, children and students believe violence is an option and we need to make sure we take that option away from them,” she added.
The district is starting a new guidance counselor program to help even more students with their mental health.
“Hopefully we can get to the root of why kids are angry or why they think that is an option so we can work through ways for them to take in their emotions and their feelings and deal with things in a different matter,” Bourcier said.
Bourcier also sent News13 the following statement in an email.
“Horry County Schools is deeply saddened by the tragic loss of a student at Tanglewood Middle School. Our thoughts and prayers are with the families, students, and faculty of Tanglewood Middle and Greenville County Schools, and we stand with their community in expressing our sincere condolences.”
“After any significant school-related incident that takes place across the country, we reflect on our current safety and security measures and are always reviewing ways to continue to provide a safe and secure environment for our students, staff, and visitors.”
Melody McFadden, a volunteer with the South Carolina Chapter of Moms Demand Action is no stranger to gun violence. She said there are ways to end conflict besides violence.
“You don’t have to pick up a weapon,” she said. “You don’t have to take a life.”
After losing her mother and niece to it, and now her granddaughter is going to middle school not far from where this happened, she knew she had to say something.
“Jamari Jackson’s life is done,” she said. “It is gone and that is tragic. We have to start making our young people understand from the very beginning. We can sit down, we can talk, we can find a way to deal with whatever the problem is without a gun being involved.”
McFadden also said on behalf of the Moms Demand Action group that South Carolina needs to strengthen the current gun laws and give more time for background checks.