How do we prevent school shootings
The recent massacre in Florida on Valentine’s Day has left many speechless. The shooting resulted in 17 deaths. The shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School In Parkland, Florida is said to have the same pattern that many other high schools in the U.S. have experienced. The sad event led many to ask how these shootings can be prevented.
Experts researched the answer to this question and it did not turn out to be simple or cheap. Many different ideas were put forward such as taking measures for gun control, taking threat assessment measures, installing metal detectors and more. The benefits and limitations of each were also documented.
One option put forward by advocates of gun control say that reducing access to firearms may be the solution. However, the Congress has been reluctant in passing such measures. State lawmakers in Florida have proposed bills that expand gun rights rather than restrict their use.
After analyzing the statistics of a federal study, Avery Gardiner, co-president of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, reported that in 68% cases of school shootings, the shooters had acquired the access to arms through either their parents of close family members.
On the other hand, Philip Lazarus, director of the school psychology training program at Florida International University, put forward his onion. Lazarus believes that there should be more mental health services.
In 2000, the FBI recommended schools to have threat assessment done to prevent school shootings. It was also stated that threat assessment and mental health services were to go hand in hand. Schools were asked to analyze students to identify individuals that have threatened violence. Assessment on the seriousness of the threat was to be done and necessary action had to be taken, which could either be counseling or arrest.
Virginia was the first state that passed the legislation in 2013 which required all local school boards to adopt threat assessment teams. The teams offered counselling to students.
In the wake of the recent school shooting, many schools are now investing in security measures. All across the State, schools are hiring uniformed officers. Though, previously school shootings have occurred even in the presence of armed police.
Adding to the secretly measures, many schools now require visitors to sign in with ID badges, have locking doors and other preventive measures. Metal detectors are also being installed on campuses.