In 2014, there were at least seventeen shootings that took place throughout the school year in the U.S. In 2017, a terrorist targeted an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, UK full of school age children. The youngest victim of the recent Barcelona attack was just seven years old. As much as parents try to do enough to protect their children, there will be many times where their protection is the responsibility of someone else. Children spend a large chunk of their time in the care of their teachers, so it’s important to know what your child’s school has in place in the event of an attack. What can your school be doing?
There are some that argue that teachers should be able to carry firearms so they have a way to protect themselves and their students if an attack were to take place. However, doesn’t that just increase the odds of an attack happening? The more firearms available to potential shooters, some of which have been students themselves, the more dangerous the school environment becomes. So, the alternative is to train teachers in how to best deal with that type of situation.
Training from experts on how to defend yourself and others, and the ability to think quickly in order to save lives is more valuable than arming a novice with a gun. Schools also have the option of considering armed guards with law enforcement background. That way, the teachers don’t have to take on the responsibility of something they’re really not cut out for.
It’s a terrifying thought, thinking about having to train youngsters to protect themselves in the event of an attack, but it’s becoming a precautionary measure for all schools. One mother was saddened to find out why her four-year-old was practicing to balance on their home toilet seat. Her young child’s class had been told by their teacher to run to the toilets, climb on top of the seat and stay quiet in the event of an attack. It’s training that could save a life, but when you consider the characteristics of a four-year-old, you have to wonder which will give them away first – their balance or their voice?
So, how can you equip a child for such a horrifying event? A charter school lawyer would recommend starting with the basics, like learning to deal with bullies or other difficulties at school. It’s also wise to teach your children about stranger danger, and ask them to report any sights of strangers on the school grounds to their teachers. You can also provide your child with a mobile phone that has emergency contact numbers on speed dial. Teach your child how to contact the emergency services and what to say.
No parent wants to think about the possibility of their child being hurt in any type of accident, but the more equipped they are to deal with situations when you aren’t around, the less likely they are to be hurt. You can get some advice about supporting children here.