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MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT)- Random searches in Bibb County schools started in high schools and middle schools in September 2018. This year, the district adds elementary schools.
Last year, the school district partnered with Interquest K-9 Solutions of Atlanta to provide 50 random searches in middle and high school.
Now, Bibb County owns three dogs that sniff for weapons, drugs, bombs and other items prohibited in schools.
Bibb County Schools study
According to a study conducted by Bibb County Schools, the following illegal items were found:
- (2) guns
- (1) knife
- (1) brass knuckle
- (7) e-cigarette/tobacco products
The study also shows that this month, school officials performed 63 searches on 4,156 students out of a total of 22,295 enrolled in Bibb County.
School officials say dogs check lockers and parking lots. However, administrators perform physical searches of bags.
Corey Goble with the Bibb County Safety and Security Office says that of the physical searches, two cases involving marijuana were found.
“There were also 83 canine searches that uncovered three cases of marijuana and one of tobacco,” Goble said.
Daryl Morton, Bibb County School Board Member, says they have found nothing in elementary schools since the searches started.
“Students are subject to be searched, but we want to make sure the searches are developmentally appropriate based on age groups,” Morton said. “We don’t want to create a culture of fear in an elementary school.”
Morton suggests giving the child candy after performing a search to make the experience less tense.
Principal Chris Kirby at Porter Elementary says he has never dealt with students who are uneasy with a search.
“School safety is at the top of everyone’s list… we want to reinforce the prohibition of weapons and toys that look like weapons,” Kirby said.