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Tighter security at several schools

Published onsdag 6 januari 2016 kl 15.30
People mourning at a school in Trollhättan where three people died after a man walked straight into the school and started stabbing people. Photo: Adam Ihse/TT
People mourning at a school in Trollhättan where three people died after a man walked straight into the school and started stabbing people. Photo: Adam Ihse/TT

Several schools are tightening security to stop those uninvited from entering the premises, reports news agency TT.

Traditionally, Swedish schools have been pretty open in terms of access for the public. Last year, Swedish Radio tested how long their reporters could be on the premises of schools before anyone asked who they were and what they were doing there, and in some schools it took up to 40 minutes. But that is now changing, according to Per-Arne Andersson at SKL, the organisation for Swedish councils, which runs most schools in this country.

In October last year a young man entered a school in Trollhättan and killed three people. Police believes he had racist motives. Particularly since then, says Andersson, he has noticed an increased pressure from parents and the public to limit public access to the schools.

One school in Kalmar will this spring begin to issue IDs for their pupils so that police and others guarding the schools will be able to ensure who actually belongs to the school and who doesn't.

"It may not stop a school shooting, but it will stop unauthorised people from moving about the school premises," said Lars-Peter Gustafson who is head of education at Karlmarsunds gymnasieförbund which runs the upper secondary schools in the area.

They have already put up signs saying "no admittance" and started installing CCTV-cameras on the premises. This comes after periods when there has been problems with rows, theft and people selling drugs on the school grounds.

Recently a 17-year-old student was sentenced for trespassing on another school, despite teachers telling him to leave as he had no right to be there. "This was a pupil who went to another school run by the same organisation. But he was still sentences, as he didn't care that the school is not a public place. It makes the sentence interesting," Lars-Peter Gustafson told TT.

Per-Arne Andersson at SKL believes the development is "inevitable". And he doesn't believe the security precautions that are now introduced are temporary. "You rarely back down from a situation like that. The climate in society would have to change quite a lot for that to happen," he told TT.

Our journalism is based on credibility and impartiality. Swedish Radio is independent and not affiliated to any political, religious, financial, public or private interests.
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