How Do Teachers and Students Cope in the Age of ‘Active Shooter Drills’
I watched my wife tear up when she learned of her grandson's first 'active shooter' drill.
Moms and dads, where do you stand when it comes to active shooter drills? How do you explain one of these drills to a kindergartner? According to an article on the cnn.com website, there have been 44 school shootings in 2019 which averages almost one school shooting per week.
According to the website, scholastic.com, two-thirds of school districts in the United States now conduct "active shooter" drills. During these drills, teachers must master the skills of knowing how to inform their students but not alarming them at the same time.
Jamie Howard is a clinical psychologist with the Direct Trauma and Resilience Program at the Child Mind Institute. In an article on the website, webmd.com, she commented on active shooter drills:
The can actually make kids a little safer and more in control, and have a sense of competence that they know how to handle a potentially harmful sitiation.
Melissa Reeves, a former president of the National Association of School Psychologists told npr.org,
What these drills can really do is either potentially trigger past trauma or trigger such a significant physiological reaction that it ends up scaring the individuals instead of better preparing them to respond in these kinds of situations.
Is there a general consensus among educators and child psychology experts regarding the validity of active shooter drills and lockdowns? I found the answer is no. Some praised the effectiveness of the drills while others thought they contributed to anxiety and depression in children.
What do you think moms and dads? Are active shooter/lockdowns drills helpful or not?