By Henni Espinosa, ABS-CBN North America Bureau

January 28, 2013

SUNNYVALE, Calif.–In the wake of a recent lockdown on Bay Area schools following a supposed sighting of an armed intruder within campus, some Filipinos agree that paranoia and fear among students need to stop. But they have mixed reactions on proposals across the country to allow teachers to bring guns to school to protect children.

“We need guns in schools, otherwise how are we going to protect our kids?” Jenny Normand said.

“I don’t think guns belong in school. What they’re supposed to do there is to teach children peaceful means,” a parent, Babes Ignacio said.

The issue of arming teachers became more pronounced last Friday, when Cupertino Middleschool and neighboring Homestead High and West Valley Elementary were placed on lockdown as police searched for an alleged shooter reportedly seen by a student.

Past noon, when it was clear that it was no more than a hoax, police said the unidentified student who recanted the false report made, could be liable for such careless action.

“That’s a completely different investigation we are working on with the school administrators. We will look into that and determine if there’s any criminal charges that can be filed due to the amount of resources expended here today,” said Capt. Dave Verbrugge.

It remains unclear why that student made the false report, but for stressed out parents, students and school staff, it was no laughing matter.

Vilma Iquin had a tearful reunion with her 13-year old daughter Sophia, after she was locked in with the rest of her class. Sophia sent her mother text messages saying there was a shooter somewhere and that she loved her.

“I was really terrified. I had no words,” Sophia said.
Parent wish the pranks would stop especially when people are paranoid about gun violence in schools.

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