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#1 of 68 Old 12-16-2012, 07:03 PM - Thread Starter
 
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In the wake of the tragedy in CT, I am wondering what safety procedures your schools have and whether you think they are adequate to deal with an intruder.

 

I have heard parents complain at times about the security of the schools in our area, and how they don't feel welcome to come in the building to drop off a child's forgotten lunch without signing in, being buzzed in through locked doors, etc.

 

But this now feels like a trivial complaint in comparison with the safety that it ensures. What are others thoughts about this topic?


 
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#2 of 68 Old 12-16-2012, 07:11 PM
 
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I think if someone is determined like that shooter was, no safety procedures will be adequate enough.  At my child's school, hundreds of kids come out the front gate to meet their parents at the end of the day.  If someone really wanted to start a massacre, it wouldn't matter if visitors were required to sign-in during the day.


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#3 of 68 Old 12-16-2012, 07:32 PM
 
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Agree with Bokonon.

 

Since security systems designed to keep out intruders clearly aren't effective against people who are armed and determined, what's the point in creating a restrictive atmosphere laced with fear?

 

Our school has no safety procedures other than the standard fire/emergency drills. Doors are kept open and unlocked, playgrounds are unfenced and visitors are simply asked to check in at the office. I think that the sense of community inclusiveness and the absence of fear and restriction probably does more to create real safety than any locking of doors would. 

 

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#4 of 68 Old 12-16-2012, 07:36 PM
 
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Anyone familiar with the safety procedures can find a way around them. We want to feel our children are safe, but we have to just trust that they are.
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#5 of 68 Old 12-16-2012, 07:43 PM
 
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The school my DD attends has none. But then again, it is a very small and isolated community, so any strangers would be quickly identified (probably before they made it to the school). This was one of the reasons we came to the community--my feeling is that once the lockdowns and metal detectors and cops happen, it becomes more of an institution than a school.

 

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#6 of 68 Old 12-16-2012, 07:44 PM
 
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We have the normal most doors are locked, you must sign in at the office, etc. however we got a district all call tonight . "Due to the recent school violance and the Mayan Prophacy" the schools are on lockdown and there will be extra security at all the schools. I'm not sure why, really. We are not a small district; there are 4 high schools, then all the schools required to feed into them plus 4 K-12s.
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#7 of 68 Old 12-16-2012, 08:05 PM
 
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way...WAY before this (CT) we made the decision (and it was so largely based on this..."security") to homeschool

 

our local schools are just like jails, officers in and outside the schools (with tazers), metal detectors, clear tote bags, can't have this, can't do that, buzz in- lock down, fingerprinting, badges, etc..........we feel if you spend 13 years (K-12 and now it's even preK, so far more!) in a daily "jail" you mentally are effected and that mental effect is what we do not want

 

all the talk about "more guns, having more people armed some how prevents this, and no way less regulation"- IMO does not solve anything

 

all the "security" measures my local schools take make me feel far less safe and very worried!! 


 

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#8 of 68 Old 12-17-2012, 03:37 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Our elementary school is kept locked during the day. There is only one entrance that is open and the receptionist has to buzz the visitor through. As a parent I still feel very welcome at the school. But I guess I kind of like that the doors are locked, though I wish it weren't necessary.

 

Our high school, on the other hand, is not locked and there are many points of entry. No metal detectors. There is a police officer employed and she is out and about through the school throughout the day. I do think they have very good safety protocols at the high school though.

 

A local pre school program invested in locking doors with magnetic key entry this year due to actual incidents with irate individuals.

 

It is a hard call.  Perhaps having the doors locked at least keeps out impulsive folks who could do harm.
 


 
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#9 of 68 Old 12-17-2012, 07:58 AM
 
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All doors except for the one nearest the office are locked during school hours.  Visitors are expected to sign in at the office and wear a visitor sticker on their shirt.  I think that the evidence in last week's case is that someone sufficiently determined can get past pretty much any security system. 

 

I think that for most cases of security, our school employs one of the best systems there is:  Anyone not recognized and not wearing a sticker is stopped by adults and sent to the office.  I'm well known at the school by most (certainly not all), and twice I've been stopped because I've zipped my coat over my visitor sticker.  We have two office staff who know everything and everyone. When my husband has come in -- unrecognized by the new receptionist -- she asked him to identify himself as he signed in.    She did it kindly, politely, and conversationally, but the message was clear to him.  She was working out who he was and why he was there.

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#10 of 68 Old 12-17-2012, 08:09 AM
 
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Schools have security systems for other threats besides gun-toting intruders. Getting buzzed-in and sign-out procedures for removing a child attempt to prevent non-custodial parents from taking a child - or at least to provide the school with a reason not to release a child to anyone who shows up claiming them. It's far more common for school administrators or teachers to find themselves in the middle of a nasty custody dispute than to deal with a spree gunman. Rules about access and removal of children only make sense. No security measure is going to prevent a heavily-armed person determined to commit murder but some security measures will make it more difficult for the school to be culpable in handing over a child to someone who isn't entitled to take them off school property.

 

Some of our experiences - 

 

Montessori pre-school - the students were greeted at the gates of the school (with a smile and a handshake) and were escorted to their classrooms. I can't recall now if the front door was locked after school started, but I believe it was and parents had to ring to get in. The back door was locked. 

 

Elementary school - all doors except the front entrance were locked after school started. Visitors expected to sign in at the office. Badges given to volunteers to wear while they were helping out. 

 

High school - "Hall monitor" (security personnel) patrols the hallways. He is infamous with the students for knowing when something is happening and for somehow being in two places at once. DS and DD both swear that they have seen him heading off in one direction, only to meet him shortly afterward, coming towards them in a totally different direction and from an area that he could not have taken a shortcut to beat them there. He is skilled at sizing up a situation and defusing it before it gets out of hand. 

 

Honestly, I think for many of the safety problems that a school faces, the best security measures are having aware, alert personnel who are trained to identify potential problems and to deal with them before they escalate. Unfortunately, there are few defensive measures that are reasonable and that will prevent someone with blazing guns from causing horrific damage. 

 

From what I have read about the Sandy Hook tragedy, the teachers are to be commended for their quick actions in implementing the lockdown procedures. It sounds like they knew exactly what to do to keep as many of the students as safe as possible in horrible circumstances. They couldn't prevent the tragedy but they could respond to it in a way that helped confine it. 

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#11 of 68 Old 12-17-2012, 08:36 AM
 
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Schools have security systems for other threats besides gun-toting intruders. Getting buzzed-in and sign-out procedures for removing a child attempt to prevent non-custodial parents from taking a child - or at least to provide the school with a reason not to release a child to anyone who shows up claiming them. It's far more common for school administrators or teachers to find themselves in the middle of a nasty custody dispute than to deal with a spree gunman. Rules about access and removal of children only make sense. No security measure is going to prevent a heavily-armed person determined to commit murder but some security measures will make it more difficult for the school to be culpable in handing over a child to someone who isn't entitled to take them off school property.

 

My son's daycare put in a security system years ago.  When I asked about it, the head teacher told me that system-wide, the organization had too many problems with custody and domestic violence issues.  Basically, the facility was always locked down.  There was an entry area with a keypad, each family had then own number.  If you didn't have the code, you need to ring the bell for entry.  Granted, a determined person could get in via a window but at least it probably keeps the not-so-crazy people out, or slows them down.

 

I only know about his elementary school.  There is a double-set of doors and visitors needs to be buzzed in.  Again, a determined person would get in some way or other but at least a few seconds slowing them down is enough time to hit the panic buttons.

 

My son is in 1st grade and he has had disaster and intruder drills in both kindergarten and this grade.


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#12 of 68 Old 12-17-2012, 08:59 AM
 
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School is still a safe place for children. Safer than the car ride over for sure. I'd not be thrilled turning them into fortresses and I don't believe that would help the situation. 

 

Because we live in temperate climate, our school classrooms open to the outside. No real hallways or doors to be buzzed in. The playgrounds are gated for traffic concerns but few schools are totally gated. It's not hard to get on campus. The kids do the lock-down drills along with earthquake and fire drills. The local sheriffs are often seen but they handle it very well, are a friendly presence. Staff and kids are quick to recognize and communicate when something is wrong. I'm comfortable and so are my kids.

 

Like Miranda said, I think what we need is more connection with our community. Gosh, we average 10,000 murders a year in the U.S. while our 1st world counterparts are in the double digits. Something is very wrong and I suspect there are a multitude of cultural/political/media issues that contribute to it. Building up higher walls doesn't fix the underlying problem, in fact, I suspect it would make things worse. 


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#13 of 68 Old 12-17-2012, 01:35 PM
 
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My impression as I've seen coverage of the tragedy in CT is that there were lock down procedures that kept this from being even worse than it was. Teachers knew what to do and did. There were, of course issues, but no system is perfect. It simply sounds like teachers just couldn't act fast enough to prevent the deaths that did happen.

 

I have my kids at two different schools. One you have to go through the office and sign in. The other you go to the office and get a badge and sign in. The badge gives  you access to the doors into the school. The procedure is similar at both schools the layout is just different necessitating slightly different processes. 


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#14 of 68 Old 12-17-2012, 02:03 PM
 
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As others have said, on a day to day basis, those security measures are in place for issues other than mass shootings.  Custody and kidnapping issues are common, and so are issues related to drugs and gang violence.  It would be so easy for a drug dealer to enter the high school where I work, do a quick deal and leave.  Same with gangs.  A group could walk in and target the student they were after without much trouble.  We have an old building with a later addition, and there are way too many ways in and out.  Certain doors are always locked, but kids prop them open, or other security precautions aren't routinely enforced.  Obviously people will always find ways around rules and locked doors, but that doesn't mean that we should make it easy for them, and some crimes will be stopped by having security measures in place.  I'm not advocating metal detecters at every school or micro-chip id badges, but reducing the amount of easy access that people have to school buildings is important.

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#15 of 68 Old 12-18-2012, 10:38 AM
 
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The small private school my kids currently attend has zero security.

 

Today I was at the large public high school that one of my DD's will be switching to in January. Security is noticeably tighter than last week. It's a huge school (over 2,000 students) and has multiple entrances. Now, during the school day, all entrances except the main one are bolted, and the main entrance in patrolled by 2 police wearing bullet proof vest.
 


but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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#16 of 68 Old 12-18-2012, 10:37 PM
 
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Okay, I have to revise my answer above. Our school has just instituted a locked-door policy, effective today, in response to the CT shootings. I'm incensed, and so are most of the teachers and parents.

 

We live in a different country. This is Canada. We have universal health care, including universal mental health care. We have a murder rate from firearms that's a mere fraction of that in the US. School shooting rampages are not an issue here. Our national attitudes to personal protection and firearms are totally different. The risk of dying in an MVA on the way to school is hundreds, maybe even thousands, of times higher here than the risk of dying due to violence of any sort at school. 

 

Our local K-12 school has 90 students and has an amazing reputation for inclusiveness, community outreach and openness. It's more like a community educational hub than a separate institution. The community greenhouse is on school property. The school library welcomes anyone from the village as a borrower. Students are involved in community outreach volunteer work and activism. Community elders mentor within the school, whether formally or informally. We're a tiny, remote, rural village with few public resources -- no pool, no rec. centre, no library, no large meeting spaces, no church halls ... and so the school facilities serve many functions. The school houses two of the community pianos, the choir's portable staging, the arts society's music stands, the community soccer program's equipment, the skates adults and snowshoes and kids borrow during the winter. Classrooms and the gymnasium are available for community groups. The community in turn loans expertise, equipment like canoes, kilns, skis, and so on.

 

And suddenly, thanks to CNN or goodness knows what, our lovely little community school here in our village of 600 has closed and locked its doors. Our (new, fresh-from-the-city) school district superintendant seems to be a reactionary idiot.

 

 

US school shooters tend to be isolated loners who are fearful and disempowered, and they tend to take out their anger on institutions where they perceive their isolation and disempowerment to have begun. Surely it is no stretch to see that in our zero-risk Canadian village a school lockdown policy -- which inhibits the free interaction between school and community, which symbolizes the isolation of students from the wider world and which restricts student movement and location -- will tend over the long run to increase the likelihood of disturbed individuals choosing our school as a target. It is no mystery why US rates of school shootings continue to rise as schools get more and more controlling and "secure." Such policies are dehumanizing. They put up barriers. They isolate. All factors that play into the disturbed thought patterns of future potential mass-murderers.

 

 

And what a terribly unscientific interpretation of risk. Considering that schools are supposed to be helping children learn to critically examine and interpret information, I think that this sets a very poor example. The risk of choking on a piece of food at a school lunch or dropping dead of cardiac arrest on the soccer field is higher. We're not rushing around banning team sports or grapes. Why are we letting a media frenzy relating to an incident in a different country with a radically different health care system and firearms law dictate whether our own doors are open?

 

Sorry about the rant. I've written my letter to the Superintendant, and I know many other parents have done the same, but I'm still steamed.

 

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#17 of 68 Old 12-19-2012, 03:07 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I wonder if they are concerned right now about copycat crimes? There have been several arrests in the U.S. the last couple of days involving people who were allegedly "planning" a similar crime as the CT crime. Perhaps in your school's situation, it will calm down in a little while and get back to normal.
 


 
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#18 of 68 Old 12-19-2012, 04:55 AM
 
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US school shooters tend to be isolated loners who are fearful and disempowered, and they tend to take out their anger on institutions where they perceive their isolation and disempowerment to have begun.

and with "some" motive as well- they are starting to say one for CT

as with most shootings/killing in general- there is motive and relationship connection

 

I really wonder what this does to a small community like yours?!

 

I saw what it did to a school near me after Columbie, they took what many deemed as extreme and SUDDEN measures only to roll them back later after massive outcry- some did stay. The school in question has not had a shooting but it is in no way a safe place and has had numerous problems that have made news (mostly teachers sleeping and sex/texting students and teachers selling and ODing on hard drugs) - I did see a few students that went following the Columbine shooting (via girl scouts) and they were emotionally effected by the abrupt changes....one has to remember this was years ago and they too went from nothing to massive changes. Here in the US we have (at some) prison like schools that the kids know no difference and don't know what it was once like. Personally I do know there is a rise (locally) with stress related to children and the homeschool community has grown from kid that simply can not handle the "prison" like schools.

 

sorry to hear what they did and sorry it was done without parent input and needed debate (IMO)

 

I really feel schools should teach facts not make them up as need be......statics do exist, as does fear and overreach. Feel good measures are not facts and I hate to see this new extreme take on what should be normal and watch it morph into what will be once again, the "new normal". 


 

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#19 of 68 Old 12-19-2012, 06:27 AM
 
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We live in a different country. This is Canada. We have universal health care, including universal mental health care. We have a murder rate from firearms that's a mere fraction of that in the US. School shooting rampages are not an issue here. Our national attitudes to personal protection and firearms are totally different. The risk of dying in an MVA on the way to school is hundreds, maybe even thousands, of times higher here than the risk of dying due to violence of any sort at school. 

 

 

Taber, a small town in Alberta, had a population of approximately 7,000 in 1999 when one student was killed and another injured in a school shooting. The killer was a 14 year old boy, purportedly a copycat of the Columbine shooting a few days earlier. I'm willing to bet that Taber residents also felt that their small town was an unlikely setting for a mass school shooting. 

 

The Taber incident doesn't actually support a locked door policy to prevent spree shooters since the killer, as a student, would have been allowed to enter the school. Similarly, at  

 

-Centennial Secondary School in Brampton

-St. Pius X School, Ottawa

-Sturgeon Creek School, Winnipeg

-L'Ecole Polytechnic, Montreal

-Concordia University, Montreal

 

the shooters were all students or faculty and a locked door policy would not have prevented these killers from entering the schools. 

 

I just think that "tiny rural town" and "this is Canada" aren't your strongest arguments. I'd focus on the ineffectiveness of the policy as a preventative measure against most spree shootings. You may also want to point out that even when the shooter is locked out, he may force his way into the premises, as the shooter in Newtown did. 

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#20 of 68 Old 12-19-2012, 07:49 AM
 
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I know all about Taber. Heck, I know someone who was in the halls in Brampton in 1975 during Canada's first school shooting (one dead). My point is that these incidents are extremely unusual, and the numbers of deaths are incredibly low and it's important to examine the statistics critically. If you look at shootings in Canadian schools where children are attending and go fifty years or more in history, you can generate a list of 7 deaths. 

 

I'm not saying it never happens. I'm saying that the risk is astronomically low, and it's idiotic to build your life around useless attempts to lower an already astronomically low risk -- since we happily accept much greater risk on an ongoing basis by, say, riding in motor vehicles.

 

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#21 of 68 Old 12-19-2012, 08:03 AM - Thread Starter
 
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One of the things I keep wondering is if there is some kind of 'new normal' emerging; where society has kind of tipped a balance in the wrong direction and these types of incidents might be less rare. It is kind of a disturbing thought.

 

I'm limiting my media exposure to Newtown because it is hard to take in so much sadness and distress. :(
 


 
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#22 of 68 Old 12-19-2012, 08:11 AM
 
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I'm limiting my media exposure to Newtown because it is hard to take in so much sadness and distress. :(
 

 

I am too.  I cannot watch the news, it is too much. 


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#23 of 68 Old 12-19-2012, 08:47 AM
 
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Maybe I have a different take on the whole thing. But people keep saying our schools are safe. I disagree, because nowhere is safe. It's just that the majority of schools have never been "tested" by a tragic incident like the one that just occurred in CT. So it kind of bothers me when people keep talking about how safe our schools our--reminds me of how everyone kept talking about how safe flying was after 9/11. Flying wasn't (and isn't) safe, it's just that the chances of something happening are relatively low, largely because we (thank God) don't have people trying to blow up planes every day.

 

My son is in K, and we got an e-mail about how safe his school is. They have a system to buzz in visitors, and there are two sets of doors, the internal ones are locked. Well guess what? The CT shooter shot through the glass so the buzzer system didn't help. I am ALL FOR making my son's school safer--I don't care if there's a fraction of a pin's head chance of an incident--no matter how tiny, I want his school to be as safe as possible. So I would be all for replacing the door glass with bulletproof glass, and having an armed guard at the front of the school. To me, it's far better to have these things and mitigate the chances of something happening. I know you can never be 100% secure, but implementing some deterrents might help. And I'd rather have an armed guard at the entrance rather than remove the "gun free" zone designation for schools, and have teachers, parents, etc. packing heat around the school hallways.

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#24 of 68 Old 12-19-2012, 09:09 AM
 
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because nowhere is safe. 

 

Totally agree. This is the problem. There's nothing that doesn't carry some risk, and our job is to compare the risks and make sensible decisions based on where the payoff in risk reduction lies. Life is fraught with small risks. We're pretty well hard-wired to avoid the immediate and tangible sorts of risks that might have killed our ancestors in droves: falling rocks, predators, aggressive tribes, strange-tasting plants and so on. But we're incredibly bad at assessing minute intangible risk. We over-estimate short-term risk, man-made risk, risk that inspires moral outrage, risk in situations perceived as foreign, risk where we have no illusion of control, risk that is made personal rather conveyed in anonymous terms, and risks undergoing extensive public scrutiny. We underestimate natural risk, daily risk, risks not in the limelight, mundane risk. Your child's risk of dying from slipping in the bathroom is probably higher than his risk of being shot to death in his kindergarten classroom, but you're not covering the bathroom fixtures in latex foam and your child in bubble wrap. His risk of dying on a trip to school is probably higher than his risk of being shot to death, but you put him in his booster seat and strap him in and figure it's all good. 

 

Nowhere is completely and totally safe. That's why we have to learn to live our lives accepting that fact. We need to make sensible changes to safety and security behaviour where the cost-benefit payoff is clear. And not stress over the rest.

 

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#25 of 68 Old 12-19-2012, 09:21 AM
 
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Originally Posted by greenpig View Post

But people keep saying our schools are safe. 

 

No one is saying that any place is 100 percent safe. I'm personally saying that we need to make sure our fears are relative to the facts. Seriously, I know parents who won't let their kids play in the front yard for fear of kidnappers but let their kids roam around the back of their van without a seat belt. Kidnapping happens but it's very rare. Car accidents are the #1 killer of children period. Their fears are out of sync with reality. No one says planes are 100 percent safe... they are saying that your risk of injury is far lower than the risk you face every time you step in your bathroom.

 

It's always good to be smart and cautious. It makes sense to have precautions and plans on any school campus. Should we perhaps look at how to graduate more children who feel loved and connected with their own schools? Absolutely. Turning them into fortresses though? Not what I want and I'm not sure will bring down the rate of individuals who target schools. 

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#26 of 68 Old 12-19-2012, 10:17 AM
 
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Quote:
Their fears are out of sync with reality.

Exactly!

I see most people want what is not true but they want to think it is.

 

All the bullet proof glass in the school won't change a thing. Duck and cover was a joke and in a few years this will be as well.

 

Sadly feel good reality is what most desire and the cost is another generation that will grow up with this reality mentality - I find that to be the real tragedy because it will effect far more vs the number that is saves.

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#27 of 68 Old 12-19-2012, 10:27 AM
 
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Originally Posted by moominmamma View Post

I know all about Taber. Heck, I know someone who was in the halls in Brampton in 1975 during Canada's first school shooting (one dead). My point is that these incidents are extremely unusual, and the numbers of deaths are incredibly low and it's important to examine the statistics critically. If you look at shootings in Canadian schools where children are attending and go fifty years or more in history, you can generate a list of 7 deaths. 

 

I'm not saying it never happens. I'm saying that the risk is astronomically low, and it's idiotic to build your life around useless attempts to lower an already astronomically low risk -- since we happily accept much greater risk on an ongoing basis by, say, riding in motor vehicles.

 

Miranda

 

 

Look, I agree with you that there is a low risk. I just don't think that risk and statistics are persuasive arguments for school officials right now. They are acutely aware of their responsibilities for school safety after last Friday.  Many are former teachers who are imagining themselves in the line of fire. They will be remembering disputes with former students and parents and incidents of intruders in their schools that did not turn tragic but could have. They will be concerned about material risk. They will be mindful that even if there is only a slim possibility that something untoward may occur, if it has serious consequences such as injury and death, they are expected to plan for it and try to prevent it from happening. I understand that you need to vent about this and that hyperbole and name-calling are good for an emotional release but that won't help your cause. Step back, breathe, take an objective look and consider their position. If you are a person who tends to think in terms of numbers and statistics, it's hard to understand that there may be other ways of looking at a situation and those other ways aren't necessarily wrong.   

 

Your argument about risk is true, but if you want to keep your school doors unlocked, I think you are more likely to succeed with arguments focused on efficacy. Re-read my post. I provided a couple of suggestions for arguments that locked doors are not effective in preventing spree shootings. 

 

I would also scrutinize the language of the actual policy and how it is implemented. Your earlier post suggests that community activities are now prohibited or severely limited on school grounds. IME, most school door policies are not that restrictive. Parents visit, volunteers help out, community events go on, but everyone is asked to use a single door to enter (usually the front door) and sign in at the office. It really isn't that big of a deal. If your school policy is preventing access to community resources, it sounds like it is going beyond the typical. 

 

As an aside, I suspect that the city-bred idiot is responding to pressure from higher up, probably from the Ministry of Education, to report on and improve school security at every school in every district. School safety is a routine agenda item at most school governance meetings and included in school board, district and regional reports. I imagine that there was a quick request for updated reports after last Friday.  

 

The fact that you know someone who survived a school shooting suggests that they aren't so rare, by the way. I would like to know what thoughts your friend has about school security. Does he or she have any suggestions for appropriate measures? 

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#28 of 68 Old 12-19-2012, 10:57 AM
 
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Originally Posted by whatsnextmom View Post

It's always good to be smart and cautious. It makes sense to have precautions and plans on any school campus. 

 

One thing that I have changed my mind about since Newtown is the lockdown drill. When the drills were first instituted at my Dd's elementary school, I was unhappy about it. After reading reports about Sandy Hook, I'm pretty convinced that lockdown drills saved lives there. Spoilered since pp have mentioned avoiding reading about it: 

 

 

Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)

 

The killer shot his way into the school. He turned left down the hallway with the kindergarten and 1st grade classes. He passed a classroom that appeared to be empty because that quick-thinking teacher had ushered the students into a bathroom and locked herself in with them. He proceeded on down to other classrooms. In one, the teacher had hidden students in a closet but she remained in the open. She died, as did some of the students who panicked and left the closet. The other students survived.

 

 

 

 Now, there was a lot of misinformation about the events that morning, so I'm not entirely certain that this is how it unfolded. If true, it supports the practice of lockdown drills. I remain unhappy about the need for such drills but I don't object to them anymore. 

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#29 of 68 Old 12-19-2012, 11:09 AM
 
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Originally Posted by serenbat View Post

700


Exactly!
I see most people want what is not true but they want to think it is.

All the bullet proof glass in the school won't change a thing. Duck and cover was a joke and in a few years this will be as well.

Sadly feel good reality is what most desire and the cost is another generation that will grow up with this reality mentality - I find that to be the real tragedy because it will effect far more vs the number that is saves.

Bullet proof glass will prevent the glass being shot out allowing entry *without* making it feel like a prison. A reasonable compromise. And something the school or township can do. Gun control they cannot enforce.
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#30 of 68 Old 12-19-2012, 11:20 AM
 
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That was very much a vent. No, community activities and community involvement have not been cancelled wholesale as a result of the shooting. But there is a general trend towards this, and some back-story that I didn't get into. The new superintendant is very concerned about safety and liability when community members are in the building, or when children are out of the building. This extends beyond the reaction to the Newtown shooting. Community use of the library has been put on hold since two days ago. But community sports in the gym have been cancelled since the beginning of the school year. Field trips and events that have been taking place for years have been shelved this year due to concern about risk. Volunteers maintaining the community greenhouse can no longer use the washrooms 50 feet from the greenhouse. They have to walk to the other side of the school, wait for the secretary (who has many out-of-office duties and is often gone for 10 or 15 minutes at a time), get signed in, and then walk back to the end of the school to use the washroom that was 50 feet from the greenhouse. The office is not staffed at lunch, so no one is allowed to enter the school building during that time unless they've made special arrangements. A shared-use agreement that was pending between an arts organization and the school for a currently empty classroom has been shelved due to concerns about adequately controlling entrance into the school. So yeah ... there's very much a feeling that the school is separating itself from the community.

 

The ridiculous thing is that the main entrance of the school is directly across the street from an overgrown orchard where black bears hang out during the fall. And it's where all the vehicular traffic is. Forcing children to come in there is probably putting them at more risk for injury and death.

 

My friend who survived the Brampton shooting is in favour of firearm possession being restricted to very narrow segments of the population, but says that the most appropriate reaction to the Newtown shootings is simply "the expression of condolences." End of story.

 

Miranda


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