Weapons in school: Still a problem for Aberdeenshire

Aberdeenshire has been found to have one of the highest rates of exclusions in Scotland relating to the involvement in weapon assaults in schools

An STV report revealed that the area has excluded 60 youngsters in the past five years for being involved in armed assaults while at school – the fifth highest in Scotland.

The report comes as an independent inquiry in to the killing of schoolboy Bailey Gwynne prepares to reveal its findings.

16 year old Bailey Gwynne lost his life in a knife attack at school (BBC News)

The 16 year old lost his life last October after one of his school-mates stabbed him in the back during their lunch break at Aberdeen school Cults Academy.

The incident attracted attention from nationwide media and sparked talks about how to increase security on school grounds across Scotland.

Aberdeenshire councillor Brian Topping said: “Aberdeenshire Council has been making pupils aware of the consequences of carrying weapons. The schools are safe places to be for pupils and staff and visitors. I’m not worried about that. But we must be vigilant.”

Nationwide, 688 children were excluded for armed assaults, which included attack weapons such as knives, and not incidents with pencils or rulers.

Glasgow City Council reported the highest number of kids who had been excluded as a result, with 128 in the past five years.

North Lanarkshire, Edinburgh City Council and Fife Council had the next largest numbers, ahead of Aberdeenshire Council who reported 60.

Aberdeen City only had three exclusions under the circumstances.

Following the attack on schoolboy Bailey Gwynne, Jenny Laing, the leader of Aberdeen City Council reassured parents that schools in the area are safe, adding: “This tragic loss of life represents a unique set of circumstances and is extremely rare – if unheard of – in our city and its schools.”

At the same time, out with the city, it was reported that police had been alerted to six different knife incidents at schools across Aberdeenshire and Moray.

Aberdeenshire Council’s director of education and children’s commented on the report saying: “We take a very pro-active approach to the reporting and recording of incidents involving offensive weapons in schools.

“We are beginning to see a fall in the overall number of incidents but we will never be complacent and will continue to work with parents, pupils and staff to underline the serious consequences that carrying an offensive weapon can cause.”

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