Colorado school shooting: Eastern Iowa schools take proactive approach
Written by Nikki Newbrough, Multimedia Journalist - bio | email
WATERLOO (KWWL) -
Shirley Van Arsdale greets everyone at East High School with a smile. She's the first person anyone sees when they enter the school.
She says thankfully she hasn't seen anyone come through with a weapon in her four years she's been at East High, but she could only imagine what the scenario would be like
"I don't know. I'd probably be praying and crying like crazy but at the same time trying to make sure that everybody else know that we have an intruder in the building," said Van Arsdale.
Just last Friday folks at Arapahoe High School in Colorado had that experience first hand, when a student came to school armed.
School officials say they have put many physical measures in place for school safety, including their "run, hide, fight" school intruder training. But as for a student opening fire in a school, they hope to intervene before this even becomes a student's option.
"To preventively recognize signs and symptoms of grief, of anger, of pain that kind of make a preemptive response so we don't find kids in a situation where they believe that that's their only option is to do something that turns to hurt others or themselves," said Willie Barney, asst. superintendent of Waterloo Schools.
Barney say it's important to support these students first before they feel violence is even an answer, but it takes a community to support this.
"I think if we can take the time to just check in with each other to show a little compassion to reach out to one another we are going to see these things happening less and less but it's going to be important that we all do it together," said Barney.
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