For schools, tragedy hits homePublished 11:19am Monday, December 17, 2012
The tragic shooting in Newtown, Conn., brings to light several questions that hit home locally: Should the issue be discussed with elementary school students? Are school security measures stringent enough? Do changes need to be made?
“It’s a fairly fragile situation,” said elementary principal Scott Colbeck. “Certainly we are going to be aware of how children are feeling, but we don’t have any plans to bring any more attention to what happened on the East Coast.”
Kennedy Secondary School councilor Joseph Snowden said he doesn’t expect there to be any big changes, but he wouldn’t be surprised if some kids come into his office with concerns.
“As a counselor, you can’t really have those preconceived notions,” he said. “You just have to be ready for anything that comes through the door.”
Fergus Falls public elementary schools participate in five lockdown drills each year. That means each student has practiced lockdowns 30 times before moving on to Kennedy Secondary School.
“(The shooting in Connecticut) just reminds you of why we do what we do in school on a daily basis and why we have safety measures in place,” Colbeck said.
According to Colbeck, it is too early to say if changes need to be made here in Fergus Falls, but as more details are learned, this incident may spark a change in security practices.
“They had lockdown measures in place at the school in Connecticut,” he said. “Their teachers were doing exactly what our teachers do in our drills.”