Recently the Rock Hill school board voted to spend almost $2 million to make our schools more secure from the tragedy that occurred in Newtown, Conn. None of us questioned the need to make our schools as secure as possible from such an atrocity.
Yet it was difficult for us because this type of lock-down security goes against the atmosphere many of us who have worked in schools for a lifetime would like to maintain. We want to welcome people into schools and say, “Come in! See how we work to educate children so that they will be good and productive citizens. Come in, grab a small chair, sit in the hall and read with one of our little ones. We are so proud of them.”
But what we are doing, what we must do, is to to lock our doors and follow the many good but also sad recommendations of our Safety Audit. I’m likely not the only one who thinks of the effects of a weapon with 60 cartridges on first-graders and recoils in horror. First-graders can be so very small and frail.
Yes, we have amendments protecting our citizens’ rights. But we can make sure that all having arms register them and require checks on the backgrounds of those seeking them. We can put restrictions on how many bullets can be sprayed from a weapon at a single trigger pull.
We can also perhaps look at increasing the support we give to school guidance counselors and our community mental health facilities. Trying to help our teachers and our families get help for incipient problems often evident at an early age seems so much better, so much more civilized than always calling on them to help with tragic aftermaths.
Rock Hill school board