Better East Texas: Newtown -school safety - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Better East Texas: Newtown -school safety

Following the shootings in Newtown, Connecticut, local schools undertook an intensive review of disaster plans and security procedures.  It was all an attempt to give parents some comfort that their child's campus was ready if anything tragic happened.  It also gave teachers and students an opportunity to review their plans with some seriousness.  But unfortunately, and I do not want to alarm parents by saying this, I don't think there is a school in the nation that could prevent someone with malicious intent from essentially attacking the school.  Security on campus is a must and can always be elevated and an on-alert state of teachers and staff is part of the new normal.  But I don't believe that arming teachers or administrators is the answer.  We have a very social society and as humans we need to be around people and those wishing us harm typically go after crowds.  So school districts needs to take it up an even further notch by using in-service days and other days when kids are not there to run through mock scenarios so that injury and impact of an incident similar to what happened in Newtown will not end in the same results.  It is unbelievable that our teachers have to be ready for a terrorist style attack but it is a reality.  So parents, investigate your child's school plans for handling a threat and give them feedback from an outside perspective.  In fact, demand a personal review of the procedures.  It will truly take a team effort to address actions like this the next time it happens.  And parents, hug your kids, we all need that and it will make for a Better East Texas.

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