Those of you that are regular readers of my blog will know that I’ve been battling for years to get ALL of America’s schools to change from the vastly outdated Lockdown only protocol to the more workable and proven option based Run, Hide Fight https://bobshepherdauthor.com/2018/10/09/a-formula-for-surviving-school-shootings/
However, that is the option once a shooter opens fire in school…and your reaction to it in order to ensure your own safety.
Given the school scenarios of my own child’s safety over the last 8 years here, and all that goes on elsewhere in America’s schools, it is clear to me that many such shootings had red flag indicators before the acts took place. Just look at the latest media covered shooting in Oxford, MI. There were most certainly plenty of red flags there, even though the child was allowed to continue attending the school.
Those in the know have told me many times that schools are so wrapped up in trying to counter litigation, that quite often common sense and reality is often ignored over school lawyers looking at trying to deflect litigation even at the detriment of keeping staff and students alike safe. I realize that we live in the country of litigation, often the only winners being the lawyers however, school authorities and law enforcement have got to begin to take security first instead of litigation first each and every time.
As for the staff and students, where does it put them while attending school today?
Well, I’m not a legal professional, I’m a security professional, and on my blog I will always give my advice for free. An individual’s life while undergoing their education in high school has no $ value…it’s priceless.
My advice to any high schooler or teacher who doesn’t feel safe, either through just a gut feeling, or being aware of a red flag warning, or even perhaps a rumour hitting around the school due to the school not releasing enough information about a certain situation…just get up and leave!
Remember this…it’s better to miss a lesson or two over a rumour on social media, than continue inside that school and find out that the rumour is actually fact!
Now that schools are open after a long haul of learning from home due to COVID rulings, I have no doubt that school shootings will be once again on the rise as they were pre COVID. I keep tabs on all the school shootings throughout the USA where I possibly can, sadly it’s bad, and many American’s have no idea just how bad.
It’s all about staying safe, it’s all about making the right call for yourself, therefore it’s all about being proactive.
Have a plan in mind for this. Talk with your parents, your teachers, your friends, parents talk with your high schoolers. Have a safe place in mind to go to. Schools must be more transparent, and they MUST share just why they stick by certain security protocols. I cannot comprehend just why certain schools in the USA today stick with lockdown only drills, and don’t teach the options method of run, hide, fight…the only three option that anyone has, not just for high schools, but for work places, shopping malls, on the street…in fact just about anywhere.
A month ago or so, my high schooler did just that, she stayed away. We as a family have a plan for many school incidents, this was a perceived threat on school students, my child was out at the time having lunch, and chose not to return as other students began to walk out of school lessons to safety and call their parents. It turned out to be a rumour. So what? It may well, just like the horrendous scenario at the Oxford high school in Michigan…have been real.
So, how easy of a decision was that, and just what pressures are on high school students to get up and leave through lessons if they fear for their own safety and don’t have trust in their school’s security policies? Well, from the one’s I spoke with: Not having permission from their parents first. Not being able to contact their parents by text (as both parents work) to seek that permission from class. Not wanting to upset their parents, or their teachers. And the main reason…not wanting to break from the herd.
I can’t say this enough times…you are ALL on your own in these scenarios. Gut instincts are everything. Early calls are crucial. But knowing your best options are key to ensuring your survival.
No doubt the best place to be during a school shooting is out and away from the school! In the Oxford school shooting, it was reported that there were students who didn’t attend school that day…they heeded the warnings that the red flags (from the shooter’s social media accounts for example) were giving out.