The assembly highlighted the impact of gun violence on Montgomery County
On Oct. 20, Montgomery Blair High School hosted four gun safety assemblies. The assemblies were attended by students of all grade levels, and focused on the growing risk that guns pose to student safety.
As MCPS Superintendent of Schools Monifa B. McKnight explained in a newsletter, the assembly was part of a larger county-wide initiative. “Montgomery County Public Schools in collaboration with Montgomery County State’s Attorney's Office and the Montgomery County Police Department are partnering to educate our high school students about how to keep schools and students safe,” said McKnight.
The county plans to hold assemblies in all Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) high schools. As part of a collaboration, presenters from the Montgomery County State’s Attorney’s Office (MCSAO) led the assembly.
Statistics presented included national data from the Gun Violence Archive, which showed rising rates of teenage homicide deaths attributed to guns in the United States. Between 2019 and 2020, teenage gun homicides increased from 3,122 to 4,142 and unintentional shooting increased from 1,905 to 2,315.
The assembly aimed to give students key information on gun violence in schools. “Through scheduled high school assemblies throughout the fall of 2022, students will be provided with information on the law and consequences if broken, strategies for youth to solve problems without weapons or violence, and the importance of vigilance,” said McKnight
Additionally, MCSAO presenters identified an increased number of “ghost guns”, un-serialized firearms that can be bought and assembled at home, despite Maryland banning the transfer of ghost guns in June.
MCSAO presenters also reminded students that regardless of recent Supreme Court decisions relaxing gun restrictions, student ownership of a firearm is illegal. Additionally, children 16 or older will automatically be tried as adults if they are in possession of a firearm.
As part of the county’s “see something, say something” approach, students were encouraged to stay vigilant and inform staff members of any suspicious behavior.
Additionally, students can submit anonymous tips to 1-833-MD-B-SAFE.
Alexander Liu. Hi, I'm Alex (he/him) and I'll be a staff writer for SCO this year. I'm passionate about public policy and international relations. In my free time, I enjoy drawing and watching terrible rom-coms. More »