CMS partners with unlikely source to bring back SAVE to schools - WBTV 3 News, Weather, Sports, and Traffic for Charlotte, NC

CMS partners with unlikely source to bring back SAVE to schools

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CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) -

Violence in our schools. Nearly every student either knows someone who has been a victim of or witnessed an act of violence. Now Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools is partnering with an unlikely community force make schools safer.

Ever heard of SAVE or Students Against Violence Everywhere? A national student organization, it's  roots are in Charlotte.

Students at West Charlotte high school started the very first chapter in 1989 after they lost a classmate, Alex Orange, to violence.

Dr. David Jacobs, a trauma surgeon at Carolinas Medical Center, is helping to lead the charge to bring a SAVE chapter to every high school in CMS.

"There's only so much we can do as surgeons," he said. "Once the bullet has been fired, once the damage has been done. I think the focus has turned to (29) What cane we do to keep these kids from coming in and seeing us?"

The key to its success? Dr. Jacobs says it has to be student-led.

"To really empower the young people to use SAVE as a mechanism to establish an environment in their schools where violence is just not tolerated," he said.

Jacobs sees on average two to three young people in his operating room each week.

John Concelman with CMS says they need a SAVE in every high school.

"The most important part of having a strong academic school is also having a strong school climate," he said.

A climate that's free of violence. It means asking students to step and take ownership of their school and the safety of them and their peers.

"Kind of be the watch --the eyes and ears of the school to create that safe school and that safe school place."

Currently, SAVE is in two CMS high schools.

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