Imagine that you are a parent, watching TV, when you see breaking news about a school shooting happening right now in your city; your child’s school.
That is how it was for Richard Wilford and his wife when they got a call saying there was a shooting at their son’s school, Sandy Hook Elementary.
For those not familiar, or for anyone who needs a refresher, The Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting occurred on December 14, 2012 in Newtown, Connecticut. Twenty-year-old Adam Lanza fatally shot twenty children and six adult staff members.
“It’s the most terrible moment of a parent’s life — you have no idea,” Richard Wilford said.
According to The Guardian Newspaper, there were thirteen school shootings within the first six weeks of January 2014.
As of September 29, 2014, there have been 53 victims of school shootings, including 36 students. Twenty of the shootings involved one or more deaths, 39 of the shootings happened in K-12 settings, and 49 shootings occurred during a school day or school event since Sandy Hook.
Some classify a school shooting as something that is as severe as the Sandy Hook shooting, a “mass” shooting. But some people classify a school shooting as someone bringing a gun into a school and firing it, whether or not someone was injured or killed.
No matter how one defines a school shooting, the real issue is that somehow the shooters find a way to get inside these schools with a weapon.
That is where questions start to pour in. How did these people get through with a weapon? Should there have been tighter security at the school’s entrance? How can we prevent this from happening again?
North Springs’ principal Dr. Ruiz stated, “Our school has a safety school plan that we follow in case of any and every emergency possible. We are also looking for ways to always minimize the threat by being proactive in our daily operations.”
According to a study, other safety and security measures frequently reported by public schools included the use of security cameras to monitor the school, which was 64 percent of the schools who participated in the survey.
Fortunately, North Springs is up to date on this security measure. “We will be receiving more cameras with technology that will allow us to see clearer and zoom in. I do not believe adding metal detectors is necessary, it actually would cause more harm than good. Lastly, the new front entrance that will be complete in January will actually be the one and only way to enter the school which will increase security as an entry/exit point,” said Dr. Ruiz.
In the 2011–12 school year, 88 percent of public schools reported that they controlled access to school buildings by locking or monitoring doors during school hours.
“I think that metal detectors are not that necessary for our school because North Springs already has a good security policy. But I like the idea of having a security procedure in order to keep everyone safe,” said sophomore Ilene Tuck.
In addition, 44 percent of public schools reported that they controlled access to school grounds by locking or monitoring gates during school hours, 24 percent reported the use of random dog sniffs to check for drugs, and 19 percent required that students wear uniforms.
Some schools have an even stricter security policy, with visitors having to enter a secured area with surveillance and then receive a second clearance to get to the hallways.
One rumor had been floating around that students at North Springs would have to scan their student IDs before entering the school, but Dr. Ruiz has confirmed that that is not true.
“Teachers will have to scan their badge to come in and come out so we know who is in the building. Parents will have their driver’s license scanned to see if they are the correct parent and if they are a child molester,” said Dr. Ruiz.
What do you think about increasing security measures? Leave a comment below!