completely new Reality for High School Students: Calculating the Risk of Getting Shot
In response to the early-morning ambush at a high school in Santa Fe, Tex., on Friday, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick suggested schools be redesigned with fewer doors. Had the high school had an individual entrance, Mr. Patrick said, the gunman might have been stopped. Mr. Patrick, a Republican, quickly drew criticism coming from some who said he had minimized the role guns played inside the attack.
however as the gun control debate continues inside the halls as well as offices of statehouses, fears of an attack linger inside the classrooms as well as quads where students spend much of their days. In Iowa, Calysta as well as Courtney sat together on park bleachers Friday night, thinking about the frequency of attacks as well as the safety of their school.
Calysta said the school officials “could as well as should” make the campus more secure. The front doors open directly onto the commons area. “If someone was to come in, they could take out 15 people in a matter of two seconds,” she said.
“I just think the idea’s kind of sad the idea’s come to which, where every few weeks you hear about something completely new,” Courtney said.
Some students are no longer shocked when they hear of a shooting, considering the idea simply a tragic part of growing up. A gunman will walk into a high school somewhere in America, as well as open fire.
On the front steps of Roosevelt High School in Seattle on Saturday morning, pregame excitement for a soccer match was inside the air. however when students were asked about the latest school shootings, the environment in their school as well as the potential for violence, the laughter stopped. Voices fell to somber silence.
“At which point the idea’s just kind of a reality,” said William Neffner, a 17-year-old junior who plays midfield on the team. The once-a-month lockdown drills which the school conducts, he said, have become routine, as hold the conversations at home about what to do or not do if a gunman arrived on campus.
“the idea doesn’t make the idea more likely,” William said of the drills as well as conversations. “however the idea prepares you.”
The advice coming from his parents, he said, was also filled with uncertainty: He might have to decide on his own precisely what to do, inside the moment, if something happened in his school.
“Whatever you can do to stay safe,” he said, quoting his parent’s advice.
Alex Kanya, a 17-year-old senior at Northwest Catholic High School in West Hartford, Conn., first learned about the shooting in Santa Fe on Twitter, the same way he had heard of the many attacks before the idea.
“You open up your phone,” Alex said, “as well as know which there’s been another mass shooting, as well as nothing happens.”
inside the wake of the Parkland shooting, Northwest Catholic recently added signs on the outside of the buildings to help law enforcement officers know where students were, Alex said. School officials have handed down specific guidance about, for example, how to cover door windows with paper inside the event of a shooting. Still, the gravity will be lost on some of his classmates.
“When there’s some tragedy like Parkland or like Santa Fe, people always say, ‘the idea’s not going to happen to me,’” Alex said. “When we did our active shooter drills in school, people were cracking jokes as well as laughing.”
For the students of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, where 17 people were killed just three months ago, the Santa Fe shooting set off waves of emotions: sorrow, fear as well as a knowing feeling.
Eden Hebron, 14, had just finished her A.P. human geography test when she learned of the attack in Texas. Text messages quickly followed.
“I read the details — 10 people — as well as the idea just broke my heart,” said Eden, who was in a classroom at Stoneman Douglas where three students died. “I know the grief as well as emptiness they are going through knowing their friends were murdered. I know what the idea feels like to watch your friend die. No child should ever have to experience which.”