Students at a high school in Illinois experienced a uniquely terrifying school shooting drill on Wednesday. Instead of conducting a regular school lockdown, Cary-Grove High School administrators simulated gunfire by shooting off blanks in the hallways while students locked their classroom doors, pulled the curtains, and hid.
The simulation will take approximately 15–20 minutes, during which time teachers will secure their rooms, draw curtains, and keep their students from traveling throughout the building. Please note that we will be firing blanks in the hallway in an effort to provide our teachers and students some familiarity with the sound of gunfire. Our school resource officer and other members of the Cary Police Department will assist us in sweeping the building to ensure that all students are in a secure location during the drill. At the conclusion of the drill, we will take some time to process what occurred and then we will return to our normal classroom routine.
I encourage you to discuss the drill with your student both before it happens and after. These drills help our students and staff to be prepared should a crisis occur, but it may cause some students to have an emotional reaction.
Schools and parents have gone to exceedingly extreme lengths, in the wake of the horrific killing of 20 children and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School, to come up with ways to prepare for school gun violence. A school district in Texas is considering allowing teachers to carry concealed weapons; parents have been purchasing bulletproof backpacks for their kids to take to school; the South Carolina legislature is even considering making a gun training class for high schoolers; and some parents even packed a gun for their sixth-grader to bring to class.