A group of students at Mojave High School in North Las Vegas walked out of class on Friday to send a message that they want their school to be safer.
Those students will likely be suspended. A spokesperson for the Clark County School District announced that anyone who walks out of class will not be allowed to play sports or participate in extracurricular activities.
"There's a good number of kids that are here currently that (we) know have guns," student Montrail Wills said. "It shouldn't take kids to lose their lives (in Florida) for somebody to really care about it because it's an everyday thing."
About a dozen students walked out of class, one hour before school ended for the week. They said some of their friends tried to walk out, but were caught in the hallways. The students then gathered in the parking lot in front of the school, waiting until the rest of the campus was dismissed.
"I know they think, 'Oh, troubled students are just going to walk out and use it as an excuse to ditch,'" Wills said. "I'm an honors student. I have all honors classes, and I still think it's a problem. I think we should be able to speak about it. If anything, not be reprimanded for doing it."
Wills said he does not believe the debate or his message should necessarily be focused around gun control.
"(Some people) want to make stricter gun laws, which is not going to change anything," he said. "The kids? You can always go to the streets and get guns ... There's multiple kids that always have guns."
Detective Matt Caldwell, the president of the Police Officer's Association of CCSD union, said he understands why students might not feel safe on campus.
"I'm not saying schools are not safe, but they could be a lot safer," Caldwell said. "We have some campuses that have over 3,000 students and there's only one officer inside."
Caldwell said officers have been getting consistently cut from the department for the last 10 years. He said he hopes Nevada legislators step in to reverse the problem by adding at least 40 officers, which would cost about $5 million.
"I would like to see legislators specifically fund school safety much in the same way they did the 'More Cops' tax in 2016," he said.
Even if the department found the money to hire 40 officers, CCSDPD would still not have one officer per campus.
"Our training indicates that if there's an active assailant on school property, we're to enter if it's one officer or five officers," Caldwell said. "Our job is to preserve life, and we're trained to go in."
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