School districts enforce safety policies after violence at games | #schoolsaftey

MECKLENBURG COUNTY, N.C. — An increase in violence at high school football games is putting a spotlight on safety.

Last weekend, a fight with multiple students broke out in the stands at a Harding University High School homecoming game. 

Around this time last year, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools was dealing with the same problems, resulting in them rolling out new rules for athletic events. Now the CMS district, along with other districts in the area, is reiterating policies in place meant to keep the community safe at games.

WCNC Charlotte spoke to a Harding University High School student who witnessed the fight. 

 “I was like wow, I didn’t know what to say,” student Samaria Jackson said. 

At least one person was hurt in the fight between multiple students. The district said no one was available Wednesday to talk about the district’s athletic safety policy. 

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The district said in a statement, “Last year protocols for safety and security for athletic games were put in place. We will continue to follow those plans which include having visible security at the games, not permitting unaccompanied minors at the games, and requiring fans to stay in the bleachers except for visits to the concession stands and restrooms.”

WCNC Charlotte asked Harding University High School students if all the rules are followed at games, in their experience. 

“At the football games and stuff like that? Me personally I do,” Jackson said. 

Jackson’s friend, also a Harding University High School student, disagreed. 

“I don’t really see a lot of people with chaperones,” Daniyah Allen said. “I just see kids coming to the games without any parents.”

Allen and Jackson said they would welcome some security changes at games. 

“More security,” Allen said. 

It’s not just at CMS where policies are being enforced around safety at school athletics. 

Starting this weekend, at the Chesterfield County School District in South Carolina, students below eighth grade need a chaperone. 

Credit: WCNC

“We want everyone to be safe, it’s not anything to put an extra burden on parents or what have you,” Omoro King, Chesterfield County School District Chief of Student Services & Administration said. “It’s all about accountability. Making sure we get to ensure we get to enjoy the games.” 

The district is also increasing the number of law enforcement present at games. 

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“They shouldn’t have to worry about while they’re sitting there, watching the football game or watching their kids perform out on the football field, or any of our athletic events, it’s all about making sure that our families are protected,” King said. 

In addition, a clear bag policy is in effect. Clear bags at athletic events are also required at Rowan-Salisbury Schools and Cabarrus County Schools have the same policy.

Contact Shamarria Morrison at [email protected] and follow her on FacebookX and Instagram. 

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