Open campuses provide benefits for both students and faculty members

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While the belief that schools should be heavily guarded and fully gated is justified, turning a school into a prison is not the answer.  Enclosing school grounds can make students feel uneasy, affecting their ability to learn.  Heavily guarded schools may cause difficulties for intruders to gain access to campus, but they also create challenges for students and faculty to exit safely.  Open campuses allow students to visit school on the weekends or after school hours.

When a school has a large amount of security personnel regularly on campus, there is a higher suspicion of danger.  This can cause anxiety among the student body. Students may feel more apprehensive rather than secure on campus, which can negatively affect their academics.

“I feel that an enclosed school would severely hurt the student body,” said sophomore Isaac Golberg. “This [narrow-minded] solution transforms a school into a type of prison that creates distrust between students and faculty.”

If students hear an announcement that an intruder is on campus, they immediately plan an escape route.  With fewer exits available, students and faculty are left in greater danger. More exits and entrances also reduce traffic on busy streets such as Valmar and Mulholland. They allow for more convenience among faculty, students and community members, especially in an event of danger.

“The [problem with a closed campus] is the expense of modifying a campus and the expense of the trained security personnel,” said Assistant Principal Todd Schroeder.   “The second problem is aesthetics.  Would our parents, students and staff go for something such as this in our community?  I believe they would not.”

Open campuses provide a greater desire to be at school.  They create a free atmosphere, which in turn allows students to feel comfortable in their surroundings.  Open campuses also allow students to have easy access to the school on weekends. If a student forgets a textbook necessary for homework, he or she can easily return to campus to retrieve it.  The CHS campus provides students and community members free access to the fields and track as well. CHS is home to many recreational sports leagues for elementary and middle schools and hosts many community events on the weekends. With extensive campus security, weekend games would be harder and less desirable to attend.

Due to recent events across the United States, some advocate increasing security and creating a closed campus.  However, in the long run, an open campus will create a more enjoyable and efficient learning environment.

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