RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Richmond schools are considering a proposal to put metal detectors in city middle schools amide concerns over violent incidents.

Superintendent Jason Kamras presented the proposal to school board members Monday evening during a work session.

The proposal totals $1.3 million, and would see at least two metal detectors put in each building, along with handheld wands and additional Care and Safety Associates.

Jenny Aghomo, whose daughter attends Binford Middle School, said she supports the idea — especially after the community was shaken by violent incidents.

“It’s scary. This is something that’s hitting every single one of us,” she said.

Cliff Lent, the president of M7 Solutions, a security consulting company, said he’s not against metal detectors, but that the money should be spent on other measures first.

“It can’t hurt to have a gun detection system. They can be preventative, but they can’t ensure a gun-free campus,” he said. “Schools are in crisis financially. There’s teacher shortages. There are counselor shortages and if we’re going to be putting 100,000 plus dollars into a system that doesn’t address the underlying issue, I think we’re remiss in that regard.”

Staff, students and families have heightened safety concerns after a Boushall Middle School student brought a gun to school two weeks ago.

Earlier this month, four Richmond Schools students were shot in one weekend. One of the victims was a 13-year-old boy who died in a separate incident.

Richmond Public Schools told 8News that since 2021, they’ve reported 43 incidents where prohibited items were confiscated.

In the 2021-2022 school year, 27 prohibited items were taken away. Five of the items were guns. In the 2022-2023 school year, 16 prohibited items were confiscated. Four of the items were guns. The school system said two of the four incidents involved adults.

“We definitely don’t want to make kids feel like they’re doing something wrong. It’s not saying that you’re a bad kid, but this way we can just try to at least protect all the kids, all the children and even a child that may want to do this. So, I think it is just a good idea,” Aghomo said.