School shootings are horrific events bearing a lot of grief to families and the community. One of the deadliest incidents happened in Florida’s Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, where a former student Nikolas Cruz injured 17 people and killed 17 others (“Teen gunman kills,” 2019). In my understanding, this event is similar to other shootings. However, difference is that the number of those who suspected this teenager of a tendency to violence is quite large. A special distinguishing feature is the YouTube comment from the “Nikolas Cruz” user reporting that he will become a shooter (Chuck et al., 2018). Even though most school shootings have bystanders who know about criminal intentions, they are rarely prevented.
Such killings strike with cruelty, and protection from them is a significant security issue. Moreover, most attacks are not impulsive, shooters show deviant behavior, and several people suspect them (Pollack et al., 2008). According to several sources, Cruz was suspicious, disturbed classmates, and the school and law enforcement agencies were aware of his potential danger (Chuck et al., 2018; “Teen gunman kills,” 2019). However, these warnings did not help save the victims in the incident.
As a result, the question arises of who should take care of the safety of schools. I believe that security depends firstly on law enforcement agencies, and then on school administration and teachers. In Florida, law enforcement officials did not respond sufficiently to signals, although they could help. School security depends on the school administration – hiring specialists and providing the necessary security tools. Teachers, in turn, significantly influence the establishment of trusting relations with students and the taking their messages seriously (Pollack et al., 2008). Nevertheless, without the adequate work of officers, the administration and teachers will not be able to do enough. To some extent, security also depends on politicians enacting laws, particularly gun control. Weapons should not be so easily accessible, especially for students.
Chuck, E., Johnson, A., & Siemaszko, C. (2018). 17 killed in mass shooting at high school in Parkland, Florida. NBC News. Web.
Pollack, W. S., Modzeleski, W., & Rooney, G. (2008). prior knowledge of potential school-based violence: Information students learn may prevent a targeted attack. US Secret Service and US Department of Education.
Teen gunman kills 17, injures 17 at Parkland, Florida high school. (2019). History. Web.