School Safety measures at BSM

The+main+hallway+at+Benilde-St.+Margarets.

Ashtyn Lowenberg

The main hallway at Benilde-St. Margaret’s.

On November 30, 2021 a school shooting occurred at Oxford High School in Oxford, Michigan. Former Oxford High School student Ethan Crumbley openly fired at students, killing four and injuring several. He has been charged with terrorism causing death, four counts of first-degree murder, seven counts of assault with intent to murder and 12 counts of possession of a firearm.

The shooter, Crumbley, had exhibited erratic behavior prior to the shooting. A teacher brought Crumbley down to the office on concerns of his behavior hours before the shooting where he met with school officials as well as his parents. However, he was allowed to return to class.

During the shooting, the students and teachers at Oxford High School barricaded themselves into their classrooms while Crumbley was roaming the halls. BSM has similar procedures in preparation for an incident like a shooting to happen at the school. “Every year we go through different scenarios where people have to talk about if I’m in this space, what would I do? And that’s the biggest thing you can do is mentally prepare yourself. You can go through the actions too. Like with our students, we go through procedures physically,” Assistant Principal Cami Dahlstrom said.

Every year we go through different scenarios where people have to talk about if I’m in this space, what would I do? And that’s the biggest thing you can do is mentally prepare yourself. You can go through the actions too. Like with our students, we go through procedures physically”

— Dahlstrom

BSM has procedures and instructions for students and faculty in case an active shooter were to be on campus. If the shooter is near the location of the students, the teachers are supposed to lock the doors to their classrooms, turn off the lights, and close all of the blinds to the windows if they have time. Students are to find the nearest classroom or if the shooter is not near the student’s/teacher’s location, their instructions are to evacuate the building and go to Saint Georges Episcopal Church where parents can pick up their children.

Several Oxford parents are concerned that this shooting could’ve been avoided if more attention was brought to the actions of Crumbley the days leading up to the incident. BSM has been trying to improve students’ mental health by offering various support groups and having an on-campus counselor open to all students. “We also have what’s called a student support group, where we get together every Wednesday and talk about any student that’s come up that has recently changed their behavior…and then we have somebody that connects with that student to make sure that they’re okay, or if their family needs anything. So I think that’s something that really sets us apart from other schools,” Dahlstrom said.

There is also concern that Crumbley’s parents could have done something to possibly prevent the incident on Tuesday. It was reported that the 15 year-old shooter received his gun and ammunition from his parents. Crumbley also had several reports of behavioral concerns that were predicted to stem from his family/home life. “I feel like when kids get older and they’re able to drive and do their own things, parents know less about where they are and what they’re doing. So, just don’t stop parenting as long as you can because if you know what’s going on in your student’s life, then you’ll know what they’re getting involved in, what they’re looking up on their computer, who their friends are and what their interests are,” Dahlstrom said.