Tue | May 23, 2017

Out of Service ... Schools Abandon Defective Metal Detectors

Published:Friday | May 15, 2015 | 5:00 AM
A metal detector being used at a school in the Corporate Area.

Several schools across the island have indicated that the metal detectors received from the Ministry of Education are defective.

Checks made by The Gleaner at select schools revealed that the detectors are not being used to full effect because they are not in proper working condition.

Wayne Evans, dean of discipline at Bustamante High School in Vere, Clarendon, told The Gleaner that the school does not make much use of the detectors because they were malfunctioning.

"We hardly use them because they are not very functional at all, and nobody came to do any inventory on them. One of them is damaged and one malfunctions," he said.

For Clan Carthy High School in east Kingston, only one metal detector works. The dean of discipline at that school told The Gleaner that the detectors are not used regularly.

NEW DETECTORS PURCHASED

At Mona High, another school which had defective detectors, principal Kevin Jones said since he became principal last September, he has purchased two new detectors to replace the malfunctioning ones. Jones also indicated that he had installed cameras, which led to an improvement in security at the school.

Another principal who had issues with defective detectors was Valentine Bailey of Camperdown High School.

"We had some malfunctioning issues with them, but we got it sorted out, so we have them up and running and we use them intermittently," Bailey told The Gleaner.

Howard Salmon, interim principal of Christiana High School in Manchester, who was an education officer at the time the detectors were issued, is making a call for the ministry to replenish the stock of detectors that are currently in schools.

"All the schools in this region received metal detectors, but what I know now is that they have become overused and they need to be replaced," he said.

In an email response to The Gleaner, Chief Education Officer Dr Grace McLean said: "The Ministry of Education will be procuring new metal detectors in the new school year. An audit of school needs is currently being done."