Parents seek safer schools in Shelby County

Parents seek safer schools in Shelby County

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SHELBY COUNTY, AL (WBRC) -

Many parents with students at Shelby County schools are demanding increased security after a gunman held students hostage on Tuesday at Chelsea Middle School. They started an online petition Thursday and it had 126 signatures by Friday morning. The website is safeshelbycountyschools.com.

Parents say they plan to deliver this petition to the board of education and the Shelby County Commission next week. Ty Coffey created the website hoping to start a grassroots attempt to bring change to the Shelby County School System.

Coffey's 6-year-old niece goes to school in the district and he says Tuesday's incident hits close to home. With roughly 29,000 students and 3,500 faculty members, Coffey says there needs to be more protection.

Two months ago, Shelby County Sheriff Chris Curry asked the commission for more money for school security, but his request was denied. The BOE says they are looking at making improvements, but that requires money they do not have.

"We are petitioning the Shelby County Board of Education because, ultimately, there responsible for the safety of their 39 campuses to work with Shelby County's Commission and the sheriff to provide a solution. Coming back and saying ‘Sheriff Curry, there's no more,' that's not a solution, it's an excuse," said Coffrey.

The commission says this issue falls on the BOE but they are willing to come to the table and see if they can help in some way.

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