Prevent School Shootings: 6 Things We Can Do Right Now and None of Them Involve Gun Control

Prevent School Shootings: 6 Things We Can Do Right Now and None of Them Involve Gun Control

Prevent School Shootings: 6 Things We Can Do Right Now and None of Them Involve Gun Control

In case you haven’t heard, there was yet another school shooting this morning in southeast Texas that’s left at least eight people, mostly students, dead. Just as I still am after the preventable Parkland shooting, I’m incensed that this has happened yet again. So I’ll repeat here a few of the measures I’ve already presented to my local school board: ways to stop, or reduce, school shootings that don’t involve disarming law-abiding citizens (make sure you click that link and read all the way through it!):

1. Lock the Doors

This may seem like a no-brainer, but I know from experience that schools are not locking their entrance/exit doors, and someone with evil intentions can waltz right in.

2. Teach Your Kids NOT to be Victims

Some would prefer us all to be cowering in corners behind those ludicrous Gun-Free Zone signs, with no self-defense training, and without a weapon. That’s a recipe for disaster. Our kids need to be taught how not to be victims, that they’re capable of saving their own lives and the lives of others should the need arise. There are plenty of self-defense measures. They include:

  • * The ALICE system: Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, and Evacuate. This is CRUCIAL information and training that’s proven to save lives. Individuals and groups can purchase active threat response training for a small fee. Please read more about it here.
Photo Credit: BPN News

  • * Martial Arts Training
  • * Self Defense Training
  • * Weapons Training

3. Hire Armed Guards and Arm School Staff

We must have armed security, and it’s obvious to me that a school needs more than one armed resource. There are plenty of retired, and fully trained and ready to go, law enforcement officers and veterans who are ready and willing to serve. If your state laws allow it, as does mine here in Idaho, don’t wait for government to act. We all know it won’t. Be proactive and demand that your school hire armed guards. They need to be stationed both inside AND outside the school. And let’s start thinking about our school staff as first responders during a mass shooting. There are plenty of them willing and able to serve.

4. Install Doors Leading to the Outside in All Classrooms

It’s a no-brainer. Doors are relatively easy to install and it’s been proven that classroom doors leading to the outside save lives. Kids need an escape route. And right now, too many classrooms have one door only that leads directly into the hallway. It’s the ideal location for a shooter to cause mass casualties. We have to take that advantage away from them. A reminder from Columbine and Sandy Hook:

…MOVE!…Keep moving and you will increase your chances of survival. And if you run away, you will become a smaller target. The worst thing to do is stand still.

Yet that is what happened at Columbine and Sandy Hook. At Columbine High School the students were instructed to hide under desks. That is what they did in the library. Stay there and wait…”until help arrives.” We listened to the 911 call from the teacher in the library who told the students to stay still. They waited…four minutes and ten seconds until the two shooters showed up and killed ten students.

At one point in the 911 call a student says “Can’t we just leave?” There was a door, right there in the library, that led to the outside. They could have all escaped.

5. Install Bullet-Proof Glass, Walls, and Doors

This one is a bit of a larger fix. Shooters know that targets hiding behind standard doors, walls, and windows are not safe. While indeed it takes time to retrofit windows with bulletproof glass, it’s been proven to save lives. And this company has a potential solution to make retrofitting existing windows more efficient and cost-effective. Bulletproof doors are another relatively quick install. Both should be done as soon as possible in every school in America.

6. Recognize the Signs of a Potential Shooter

Pay attention!

Another mass shooting inside a school cannot happen again. It’s not a gun problem; it’s a societal sickness, and it’s one that’s not going to remedy itself anytime soon. While we need to address the various WHYs of the issue and start working to solve them, we need to act NOW to make our schools as safe and secure as our athletic stadiums are. Our children are invaluable. Let’s start treating them as such. Don’t wait for someone else to speak up. Be the squeaky wheel until your school acts.

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9 Comments
  • Ben Pickford says:

    I think the shooters name and picture should not be published on TV or on social media with endless coverage. This gives the shooter free negative fame and encourages these kind of people to commit their heinous act,

  • Misha Burnett says:

    The hardware solutions you suggest would cost a lot of money. Just to give an example, the university where I work just installed a new bulletproof door and two bulletproof cashier windows, at a material cost of about four thousand dollars. That’s not counting the labor cost and that is replacing an existing door and counter. Furthermore, I would not call cutting a new opening in an exterior wall and framing a door “easy to install”. That’s not to say such things could not be done or are necessarily prohibitively expensive, just that they would involve a considerable investment.

  • KJ Mansfield says:

    You forgot one.. Teach kids to stop making fun of and ostracizing other people. Not sure why that always gets left out of these things. Instead of discussing ways to handle the situation, why not find the way to prevent the situation.

  • Mickey says:

    Do something about the warning signs when there are any. Most of these kid shooters claim they were tired of their classmates bullying them ( Yes, that includes you angels at Parkland who admitted to bullying Cruz)

  • GWB says:

    1. Lock the Doors
    My son’s high school did this – only one door was unlocked, in front of the office.
    *My* high school had so many entrances……..

    3. Hire Armed Guards and Arm School Staff
    Easier yet: Just remove the “Gun Free Zone” rules! Let anyone who can legally carry do so on school property. Stop making schools a “target rich environment”.

    4. Install Doors Leading to the Outside in All Classrooms
    This has its own drawbacks – namely after-hours security and possibility of rigging a door for surreptitious entry. It can be dealt with, but this is an expensive proposition (cutting holes in external walls is not a ^snap^ easy thing).

    5. Install Bullet-Proof Glass, Walls, and Doors
    Wow, so you’re ok with taking the next decade of protests from teachers that they aren’t getting paid enough? Because this is incredibly expensive.
    BTW, I’m going to guess that almost every classroom door in modern schools is already as bullet-proof as they’re going to get, since they are required in most jurisdictions to block fire for a relatively long period of time. And most exterior walls are already likely bullet-proof, as they are brick or concrete block. Making interior walls so would dwarf the entire city’s budget, I would bet.

    Another mass shooting inside a school cannot happen again.
    But it will.
    it’s a societal sickness
    And this is why. Hedonism and narcissism cannot maintain an open and free society.

    As to the bullying, probably the biggest thing you can do (besides restoring morality and discipline) is not punishing the kids who fight back. Stop treating the bullied as co-aggressors, and teach them to fight back. (Restoring the concept of “fighting words” would help significantly.)

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