Prepare – or it could happen here

With each campus shooting, you can almost hear the cries, followed by “But that can’t happen here” from administrators across the country.

Looking back at school shootings over the past 10 years you can see they happen at elementary, middle and high schools. They happen on college and university campuses. They happen in cities, in the suburbs and in rural areas.

So are there any administrators truly preparing their campuses to help head off a tragic event? Apparently so.

Patick Fiel, public safety advisor for ADT Security Services, found a news article from Illinois that was heartening.

Following a shooting in a nearby district, the superintendent of the Aurora (Ill.) Public Schools updated parents and students on the district’s Web site. He detailed currently safety measures such a lockdown and evacuation plans and drills, visitor management policies, surveillance cameras and regular contact and role-playing drills with local first responders.

The district also has an emergency notification system that notifies parents, students and staff through phone, email and text message updates.

“It’s great to see a district that puts a premium on protecting its students,” Fiel said. “The administrators in Aurora have the plans, policies, procedures and technologies in place to give students and parents a true sense of security. I applaud them.”

-- PSW staff