South High School amps up security measures after drive-by that injured student near campus

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South High School students are operating with a closed campus Monday and Tuesday after a 15-year-old student was shot Friday afternoon.

In an email to students, school officials explained there would be a heavier amount of security during arrival, lunch and dismissal, so they’re planning to reopen off-campus lunch on Wednesday.

Psych experts explain gun violence could have psychological and educational impacts on students.

Like many other South High School students, Nina Garcia-Matthews often goes to Lake Street during her lunch break.

“I wasn’t driving last year, so I was definitely out for lunch walking around on Lake Street and it can feel a little unsafe every now and then,” she said.

The popular stretch of restaurants in Minneapolis is just a block away from the school.

Now, Garcia-Matthews is thinking twice about going back.

The student and two other victims, ages 19 and 65, were injured in a drive-by shooting near Lake Street and Hiawatha Avenue around 3 p.m. Friday — just after school let out.

Minneapolis police said the student remains hospitalized but is expected to recover. Police have not announced any arrests.

“It’s crazy because we’re all so young,” Garcia-Matthews said.

Some students said feeling unsafe is becoming the norm.

“There’s a certain degree of shock that goes away the more it happens,” said Lambers Fisher, Christian Heart Counseling therapist. “It is discouraging that our teens have to even deal with this in the first place.”

Fisher is a therapist who often has teens as clients. He said gun violence outside of school still impacts students in school.

“If it happens to someone their age that they can relate to, that’s in that growing stage just along with him, then it’s personal. Then it’s, ‘It could be me.’”

He said when it’s personal, it impacts stability.

Fisher said out-of-school violence could also have educational costs in the classroom.

“It can make it difficult to wonder whether that’s going to happen to you, so how can you focus academically if you’re wondering whether you’ll be here to put those things into practice?” Fisher said.

Fisher recommends parents and school staff make sure students know they have a safe space to talk if they need it.

In an email to students from Minneapolis Public Schools, district officials explained staff members would be available to support students if needed.