Crime scene tape

Shooting Reinforces Need for Tighter Security

  March 21, 2018

By Dan Hounsell

K-12 school shootings have become all too common in recent years. As facility managers nationwide continue reviewing emergency preparedness plans for their facilities in response to the growing incidence of attacks, there is the growing realization that many facilities and districts are not prepared to protect students, faculty and staff from shooters.

Read: A range of resources for emergency preparedness

The latest attack on a K-12 district occurred in Southern Maryland. Two students were injured and a third, the gunman, has died in a shooting in a hallway at Great Mills High School, according to the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office. A school resource officer shot the student gunman, who fired back with a handgun, Sheriff Tim Cameron said. The school resource officer was not injured, according to the Baltimore Sun.

Read: Preparing for an active shooter

The incident comes just over a month after a deadly rampage in a Florida high school. Seventeen people died in the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting, catalyzing a national conversation about gun violence in school.

Less than a month ago, after the Parkland shooting, Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan proposed spending $125 million next year to enhance security at schools in the state, including by reinforcing doors and installing panic buttons to prevent and react to shooters.

He also suggested $55 million for two ongoing spending initiatives, including $50 million for “school safety grants” that could pay for armed school resource officers, technology and counselors at public schools, and increased funding for the state’s Center for School Safety, which would include money to hire social media experts to scour the internet looking for threats.

The proposals are being considered by state lawmakers, who already have given initial approval to three tougher gun-control laws.

This Quick Read was submitted by Dan Hounsell — dan.hounsell@tradepressmedia.com — editor-in-chief of Facility Maintenance Decisions.


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