Crossing the Line Between School Safety and Stupidity

Hi Readers! I had this piece on CNN.com yesterday and I’m happy to say that there are about 600 comments so far, many of them agreeing that simply making schools more inaccessible, bureaucratic and paranoid does not actually make them any safer! – L

 

6 Responses to Crossing the Line Between School Safety and Stupidity

  1. Lollipoplover January 16, 2013 at 9:15 am #

    Thanks for addressing the new safety measures. I am so sick and tired of hearing about them.
    The only one heard that made any sense was
    instead of putting a police officer outside of every school, maybe we should put a psychiatrist outside of every gun store.

  2. Susan January 16, 2013 at 9:43 am #

    Thank you for this article. I thought I was going crazy in the last week.

    I took my kids to Sunday school this past weekend and the door we usually go in has a sign on it saying that we can no longer enter there. Everyone needs to go in the door on the other side of the building. Never mind that it is on the other side of the building as most of the parking, so people will be walking their children through the entire parking lot which was already congested with cars.

    As I was walking my son to his classroom, I saw the woman in charge of Sunday school guarding one of the doors, waving the people hoping to be let in on to the front door. I asked her why they had implemented this next rule and she said, “I implemented it for safety. Before we had people going in and out of 6 different doors. It just wasn’t safe.” As we walked away from her, my 7 year old son whispered, “Why is that not safe, Mommy?”

    Then I pick up my 11 year old daughter from her Sunday school class across the street. She tells me that instead of normal Sunday school that day, they had a police officer come to tell her about personal safety. Personal safety evidently means telling the kids details about several child abductions that have happened in the last 30 years.

    As we are picking up my son from his class, I explain to my daughter that we must now walk around the building because they want everyone to go in and out of the same door. My 11 year old then asks, “Won’t that make it easier for someone who wanted to shoot or bomb people because everyone will be in the same place?”

    Monday morning, I head to the elementary school to change the marquee as I have done for the past 7 years. I press the buzzer and instead of just opening the door as usual, the secretary asks me who I am over the intercom. Never mind that their is a video camera there and she can see me. She let’s me in and I see that she has a woman standing over her who is evidently a security advisor.

    I walk back to get the marquee letters in the office and she tells me I need to sign in even though I do not even enter the main part of the school. I do the marquee outside the school. Sigh.

    The only ray of hope, was when I was leaving the school, the office manager, principal, and secretary were complaining to each other about how the new safety rules they are being forced to implement don’t even seem to make the school safer.

    I keep thinking about the schools of my youth which had all of the doors open all day every day with no one monitoring who came or went. The schools have all implemented locked doors and buzzers and signing in, yet school shootings still happen occasionally. Why do they think more and more “safety” rules are going to stop it? If all of the safety procedures so far have not stopped them, why will more safety procedures work?

  3. Donald January 16, 2013 at 9:34 pm #

    I’m very happy to see how there are much more movies with a message today. Inspirational words are not just something on a hallmark card anymore. They are starting to sink in

    Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned.
    Buddha

    Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.
    Martin Luther King, Jr.

    An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind.
    Mahatma Gandhi

    Life is a mirror and will reflect back to the thinker what he thinks into it.
    Ernest Holmes

    However, some people think the EXACT OPPOSITE. They think that Winston Churchill’s quote was dead wrong.

    Watch your thoughts, for they become words.

    “YOU CAN’T ALLOW YOUR CHILDREN TO PLAY UNSUPERVISED”

    Watch your words, for they become actions.

    “THAT JOGGER RUNNING NEAR THE SCHOOL LOOKS SUSPICIOUS. CALL THE POLICE.”

    Watch your actions, for they become habits.

    “I HAVE ALWAYS DRIVEN MY SON TO SCHOOL. I STILL KEEP DOING IT EVEN THOUGH HE IS 17.”

    Watch your habits, for they become character.

    “I WILL BY A GUN FOR PROTECTION or I WILL NOW INSIST ON PRISON YARD SECURITY IN SCHOOLS.”

    Watch your character, for it becomes your destiny.

    WELCOME TO AMERICA. THE LAND OF THE VERY VERY SCARED

  4. Donald January 16, 2013 at 9:43 pm #

    The world is such a fearful place today. One of the big reasons for that is BECAUSE of 30 years of fear mongering. No wonder why we have so much tribalism today. Gangs form to protect themselves from this scarey world

  5. Warren January 16, 2013 at 9:51 pm #

    It is too late Donald, the ball is rolling.

    Utah instructing teachers on firearm safety and use.

    Penn. putting armed guards in the schools.

    Might as well reopen Alcatraz as a high school.

  6. Sarah January 21, 2013 at 9:18 pm #

    Shortly after returning from Christmas break my children, 2 in high school, 1 in middle, informed me that the intruder on campus rules had changed due to the horrible tragedy at Sandy Hook. Before the rules changed if there was an intruder on campus, if the kids were in the hallway they were to go to the closest classroom and the teachers were supposed to ensure there were no kids close to their doors before they locked them. Now, if the kids are in the hallway, they are supposed to stop, listen for where the gunfire is coming from and run outside in the opposite direction, if the kids are in the bathroom, they are supposed to try and climb into the ceiling ( the drop down ceiling) and if the kids are in the parking lot they have been instructed to get in their vehicles and leave. These kids have not been instructed to meet anywhere, it’s like there is no accountability if something were to happen at this school and school officials are reluctant to speak to us parents who have concerns with this plan.