Children are entrusted to us. Students rely on parents and adults in the community to keep them safe. That’s still the case as children grow into teens and beyond.
Valerie Strauss of The Washington Post writes that the U.S. Department of Education released the wrong school shooting data. They didn’t check for errors.
Snopes reports that the CNN figure is “mostly true,” the United States vastly outstrips the 27 other countries listed by CNN when it comes to the number of school shootings occurring between 2009 and 2018, and this higher prevalence holds true even when population size is taken into account.
However, countries not included in CNN’s list which might undermine the United States’ place at the top of that ranking. The Central American nations of Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala — whose firearms-related homicide rates are much higher than that of the United States, and where gun-fueled gang violence is a major social problem — could potentially outstrip the United States’ rate of school shootings per capita, although we were not able to find reliable data to check this hypothesis
It is still important that we look at ways to make schools safer. Thus far, we must ask what is being done.
Civil rights activist Michael Skolnik tweeted, One shoe bomber tried to blow up a plane and now we are forced to take off our shoes at airport security. 1822 mass shootings since Sandy Hook Elementary School and Congress has done NOTHING.
What did DeVos, Trump, Congress, and wealthy oligarchs do over the summer to make America’s students safe? Forget about high stakes tests, data collection, and transforming schools with technology. What are schools realistically doing to look out for students? If children are not safe in school, the other stuff really doesn’t matter.
Venture philanthropists who impact public schools with their pet projects have a role to play in school safety too, don’t they?
I haven’t heard the President mention school safety since Parkland. If you check on the Internet, the last time he spoke about it was February. At first he pretended to be seriously considering attention to and possible changes to gun laws. Nothing productive came of that. How can a President ignore this serious situation? He hands it over to Education Secretary Betsy DeVos and others.
Education Secretary Betsy DeVos and Sen. Ted Cruz
DeVos and politicians like Sen. Ted Cruz want to use federal dollars to arm teachers! While DeVos pushes for teachers and staff to carry guns in schools, the danger of guns and nonexistent gun laws, especially to keep guns out of the hands of those with mental illness, has been completely swept under the table. There’s no discussion of the danger of assault weapons. The lack of such debate keeps students unsafe.
I assume DeVos realizes by now, that grizzly bears are not a threat to schools. Her comment at her confirmation hearing gets chuckles still, but everyone knew then that guns in schools were a grave concern. They understood when they approved her, that she had no adequate solutions or even thoughts about keeping students safe. Yet those senators accepted the grizzly bear answer and went on to appoint her the head of schools! They are just as complicit in keeping schools unsafe as DeVos!
The Wealthy Corporate Critics
Where are the wealthy school critics, who skimp on paying for the public good, but who donate to their privatized pet projects with their tax cuts for the rich and famous? People like Bill Gates for example, who just donated $92 million to nonprofits and anti-public school causes aplenty. I could find no mention of school safety here.
Have America’s leaders and power brokers done anything to make schools safe? If they care so much about student success, shouldn’t they also care about student safety?
What safety measures are currently protecting students as they return to school? In my next post I hope to explore this further. If you are pleased with actions taken at your student’s school, or not, please share. Thank you.