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Questions, frustration in wake of shootings near La Follette High School

October 2, 2018

Students line up outside of Madison's La Follette High School on Thursday morning as they wait to be screened with metal detectors after a shooting two blocks from the school left a student injured Wednesday.

Parents of La Follette High School students and area residents aired their concerns Monday at a community meeting with Madison police and school officials following two shootings near the Southeast Side school that injured three Madison School District students.

Questions revolved around why La Follette High School allows students to leave campus for lunch and whether the use of metal-detector wands would continue, while others expressed frustration about the behavior of some students in surrounding neighborhoods.

La Follette Principal Sean Storch said district staff are discussing whether the school should do random metal-detector wand checks — such as those conducted on Thursday and Friday when students entered the high school at 702 Pflaum Road — to keep weapons from being brought into the school.

Storch said ending off-campus lunch means weighing the privileges of the vast majority of the 1,600-student body that doesn’t create trouble against harm caused by a handful of students off school grounds.

Last week, a 16-year-old La Follette student was shot and treated for non-life-threatening injuries when he was near a fight a couple of blocks east of the school. Two males were arrested and another faces a tentative charge.

On Sept. 19, a 15-year-old boy accidentally shot a gun on a Metro Transit bus near the school, injuring a 16-year-old boy and grazing another 16-year-old boy. The 15-year-old was arrested.

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