School safety in response to parkland tragedy


Morgan Wood

The above picture is from a Lambert pep rally earlier in the year. The scene here is much brighter than the serious tone taken at the safety meetings in this same gym.

After the most recent school shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, Lambert High School is implementing new safety measures to provide a greater sense of security to students. This Valentine’s Day Massacre is just the latest in a growing number of school shootings within the United States; although previous school shootings stirred feelings on school safety, Parkland was the domino that started a chain reaction. Students, parents, and faculty have had enough of not feeling secure within their learning establishment. The students of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School have called for a march on Washington and in all communities to be held on March 24. The movement has been titled March for Our Lives. Now being implemented here at Lambert, classroom doors are locked, and there is a visibly greater presence of cops roaming the school grounds. Along with classroom doors being locked, the exterior doors to the building will remain locked as well. Students will have to swipe a pass to enter the building from a trailer during classes.

The new safety precautions are in place for student benefit, though going through the motions of adapting to the new protocols will seem inconvenient until it becomes the new standard. The current students of Lambert High School have grown up in a generation where the fear of school shootings is justified by their frequency and brutality. The measures taken by Lambert administration in response to the tragic events in Parkland are hoping to ease the conscience of students and family and provide a positive sense of security within the school building.

Wednesday, February 21, meetings were held for each grade level, discussing the new measures being taken and encourage student support of the small changes made to increase their security. The administration understands that the changes will be frustrating, but students are asked to bear with the struggle as it is ultimately for their good. To quote Dr. Davidson, “I apologize for any inconvenience that may happen, but I will never ever apologize for keeping you safe.”

There was a lot to contemplate for students as the shock of our dangerous reality set in. It was one thing to hear about tragedies on the news, but it is entirely different to accept that you must prepare for them and are at risk. To help with the conflicting emotions and give students a voice in their protection, a student committee has been created to consider school safety. Likewise, there is a hotline set up for students to raise concerns privately. The administration encourages students to speak up with concerns about their peers or environment, and the Whisper campaign has been created to encourage conversation among students. The idea is that the more students know and care about each other, the safer the school as a whole will be. Lambert intends for the tragedy of Parkland to be a signal for change within the brick walls of the school building.