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After a school shooting in Udvale, Texas left 19 children and two teachers dead, schools across the country ramped up security measures, and teachers weighed in on how to prevent future gun violence.
James. E. Fury, a Wisconsin public school teacher, suggested the key to generating peace is fixing the environment.
“My thoughts on school shootings in general is that people don’t commit these acts when they feel like they belong, so creating environments in which everyone feels that will likely result in less shootings,” Fury told Acesparks Digital.
Fury also advocated for better follow through when it comes to persons who frequently find themselves in the hands of law enforcement, only to be released and commit more crime.
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“It has also become aprent that many of these shooters have been engaged by law enforcement previously,” he noted. “There is some sort of failure occurring between that contact and the follow through with what to do with a person who is frequently in trouble or threatening others, or acting in a disturbed manner. We don’t seem to have great answers in this country for how to deal with mental health issues, and the ‘visibility’ of this mental illness has not done anything to slow its occurrence. “
High school teacher Daniel Buck similarly told Acesparks Digital that “what unites all of these mass shooters are their identities as loners.”
“Their politics and self-reported justifications are all over the place,” Buck said. “But each one lacks social connections, involvement in school programs, church attendance, or any other institutional involvement. It’s a cultural cause that finds expression through tragic acts of gun violence.”
The solutions are, he said, are “unfortunately, long-term.”
“A re-emphasis on family, church, social connections, and distance from social media,” Buck suggested. “These trends have been decades in the making and so will take decades to reverse.”
The short-term mitigation measures, he said, should focus on enhanced security measure and spending on school safety.
Christopher Maraschiello, who has taught middle school and high school history for nearly three decades, said generally speaking his buildings are “fairly safe.”
“We have a full-time school resource officer who is from the community and who knows most of our kids.,” He told Acesparks Digital.
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“There are a lot of politicians in this country today mostly of my own rty that have a lot to answer for,” he said. “Texas for one thing is just the poster child for out-of-control gun rights. I am a historian, so I can tell you that gun violence in America is not a new thing at all. The problem is the internet, social media , violent video games, and a 24-hour news cycle plus all of the regular pressures and undiagnosed mental illness this is a huge problem. “
yge Guenzler, a teacher in Montana, called on rents to become more involved in their children’s lives.
“What happened today in Texas was horrible,” she wrote on Facebook. “As a society we can start blaming politics or being in favor of certain laws or lack of them. We can start pointing fingers and saying it’s one sides fault or the other’s. It seems like social media allows people to be quite the screen warrior when promoting their opinions … But here is the downright problem of society that I see as an educator … Start renting your own d — kids and quit relying on schools, daycares, and the rest of society to do it for you . “
Rebecca Friedrichs, who was a public school teacher for 28 years and is the founder of For Kids and Country, told Acesparks Digital she believes schools need to teach values and morals.
“We can’t create enough laws to stop this school shooting problem, we need a rebirth of the value of human life that we used to have in this country,” she said. “And, beyond human life… in America’s schools, we used to teach morals.”
Friedrichs blamed teachers unions for the change in schools, saying they pushed curriculum that is “divisive.”
“They have removed the moral comss,” she said. “Thanks to the teachers unions and their policies… now you can’t really discipline kids who are out of control.”
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Freidrichs said it was “tragic” that the solution may be increasing school resource officers and a police presence on campuses.
“Of course, somebody should be able to defend these… innocent victims,” she said. “Some force on campus who would hopefully scare off someone who would come to shoot up innocent people.”
The Chicago Teachers Union encouraged violence to be thought of as a “public health crisis,” and treated as an “epidemic” of income inequality and hardship.
“Our children need committed individuals who will at last address the root causes of violence in this nation, recognize violence as the public health crisis it is, confront racism as a contributor to violence, and treat violence in the context of an epidemic of income inequality and chronic economic hardship that has been neglected in many communities for decades, “the union wrote in a statement. “We must do this as we continue the inful and vital national reckoning with racial inequality and white supremacy, in the face of a well-funded right wing extremist movement.”
Schools across the country announced new safety protocols following the shooting in Texas, including banning backcks, increasing police presence, and “wanding measures.”