What preventative measures should be in place for the chance of school shooters?


Ryan Neff, Writer

The overview of school shootings.

With the rise of gun violence all across the nation as well as the rise of school shootings, what is and should be in place for the schools? From the Columbine shooting to the Nashville shooting, there have been 376 school shootings. A huge number is more days than what’s in a year, though many didn’t result in death or injury, unfortunately, the idea of it alone is terrifying. Furthermore, there have been some that resulted in a high amount of injury or death, like Virginia Tech University in 2007 with a total casualty of 58 or Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in 2018 with a total casualty of 34, just to name a few. There are numerous reasons why a person would shoot up a school, like spite, abuse, and a lack of concern for life. It’s a big issue that should be tackled by government officials as well as school districts across the nation however it’s not and might not for a while.


The overview of the preventative measures already in place.

All over the nation, schools have their own way of defending their students as well as themselves. However, the most common thing that school districts have put in place across all schools, even here, is that doors in classrooms can be locked from the inside, the office has the ability to control the outside doors locking mechanism that allows entrance to the schools, and that they require any staff member to wear a badge or have guests sign in through the main office and wear a guest badge so people know. They use security cameras on the outside of the school as well as the inside of the school. 40% in the U.S. also have a panic button in the chance of a school or an outside threat that may harm students and staff. Those are just a few things that are in place around the schools in the nation. 


What should be put into place for the schools?
Well, there could be many things done for schools in the terms of security and the laws that are in place for the schools. One of those things is the use of bullet-resistant glass for all frontal windows or doors. It will prevent break-ins or people shooting out the glass to enter the school. Another one is that schools should use the pod system and have big pod doors to protect the students and teachers. Another thing that all schools should have but only half have is SRO also known as a school resource officer. They are great people to have at or around the schools and can be proven to help students feel a bit safer than they could be. All schools should also have a panic button and not only 40% of schools. It’s a good method to alert everybody in the school and/or the people who are outside of the school.


What the people want for gun laws.

With the shooting in Nashville, many people want gun laws to be stricken because the person who shot up the school had an undiagnosed emotional disorder and was able to purchase a gun from five different gun shops. Many people have their own views on gun laws, however, the majority of people want gun laws to be stricken or even banned as a whole depending on the organization that focuses on the area. People do walkouts at their own schools to protest gun laws hoping for them to be fixed. Here in Washington state, they have/plan to ban the buying of assault rifles if the people are civilians. Another thing people want or should do is that all guns should be locked in a safe.


The Interviews of staff members of Capital High School

I interviewed two people here at the capital, those people are, Mr. Brown, one of the vice principals of Capital High School, the other person is Mr. Grimm, the overseer of the security team. I asked Mr. Brown, ‘What do you think needs to be done to prevent this?’ his answer was, “Being mindful of the training, the follow-up, but also the support after the training. Some schools have live action training, you don’t know how your body will react,” some people get trauma from that type of training, from having that type of live training where you strike fear into those people. I also asked him, ‘You think it’s a good idea to have SROs?’ This is what he had to say about it, “When you have the right person in that place, it will be very effective and help the school community. It will help guide the school,” To help the students or to be able to guide the school in a different direction than what it is going in will be a great thing. Getting a different perspective will be very helpful to the people and the communities of that school. Now onto Mr. Grimm, I asked him, ‘Is there a quick dial in the chance of this type of event?’ this is what he had to say, “There’s a button in the office to lock the school down, I don’t honestly know if that button is connected to the outside but we can directly call the cops,” which is great, a button to lock down the school in an instance. Yes, we can call the cops since we have phones on us. I also asked him, ‘What do you think needs to be in place in the terms of defense?’ this is what he had to say, “Teacher training, the camera system is being upgraded as well, our best defense is our communication and people saying something. I’ve been here for a long time and kids hear things and don’t say something,” Communication is key, no matter what is it. Word of mouth or by telling a teacher or staff member could save lives if they did hear something.


The overall conclusion

There are many things in place already for the security of the students as well as staff, however, there should be other ideas to help with the idea of security without feeling like a prison. Whether it’s the students themselves or an outside threat, we need to be quicker with the lockdown of the school. It should be a concern why people would shoot up a school and we should be ready for the chance when that happens, that alone is bad. With the rise of school shootings in the U.S. let me end this with this question, how much is too much?