Today has been a crazy day at school. Fridays are always a bit hectic but today, more so than others. It seems that because today is the anniversary of the Columbine incident, our school has heightened our security - just in case. We have extra guards and the county Sheriff is here. We're limiting hall passes and teachers are taking turns being stationed in the halls and bathrooms during our free time.
Are other schools around the country doing this?? How crazy that our society has been reduced to this level of fear. Schools used to be the safest place for a kid to be. Not anymore. I hate to admit this, but when I enter a classroom for the first time, I automatically scope out where I would "hide" my students if we had an emergency situation such as the one at Columbine or Virginia Tech.
Several years ago we had a disgruntled student that was suspended - seen heading toward school with a weapon. We had an immediate lock-down. Not a big deal - since lock-downs are somewhat common for various reasons - ie. a student needs to be transported by ambulance, etc. We keep the kids in the rooms. But this time the maintenance staff came and locked us in our rooms.Then we heard the big fire doors in each hall slam shut. What really got me going was hearing the helicopters outside my windows as they surveyed the school yard. Yeah...I was a tad nervous.
So today, with the numerous e-mails from our principal and the presence of security all over the place....my mind has been imagining a lot of what-if scenarios. What has made the youth of our country so angry....so bitter...so hopeless.....that they would resort to actions like those seen ecently in the news? Have we, as adults, taken away their hope? Have we robbed them of the innocence of their youth by putting them on the back burner while we pursue our own interests? How may kids today come home to a mom that is there? How many sit down to a family dinner? How many have a dad that comes home each night?
Broken homes are the norm. Working moms are the norm. Latch key childhoods are the norm. Who is raising our children today? Day Care centers? Television? The Internet? Something has to change. The price society is paying is way too high these days.
Okay...every now and then I have to get on my soapbox. It makes me feel a little better.
With that said....I'll be glad when today is over.