Last night family and friends came together in Benton Kentucky to remember two 15 year old students who were victims of the school shooting that happened on Tuesday. Eighteen other students were injured in the attack. And now prosecutors want to try the suspect as an adult.
The tragic story has many thinking about how to keep kids safe at school. Many schools use lockdown drills as a way to prepare for danger on campus. So what should you, as a parent, do if you get a text or call from your child who is a lockdown situation.
Earlier this week I received a text from daughter who's a high schooler that the students had been in their sixth period class for over an hour. Students weren't allowed to leave the classroom for any reason. The rumor among the kids was that there was an unwanted person on campus.
First, I made sure she was safe. Then I asked questions about what she knew versus what the students were saying. Turns out that there were three student fights on campus. And while the school administration and police were sorting out addressing these fights, all students were locked in their current classroom.
With cell phones, your kids can easily text or call you. If you receive a concerning text, remain calm. You have to keep your emotions at bay to think rationally. If you're emotional then you can make bad choices. Also, make sure your child is safe. If not help them think through how they can get to a safe place. You want to help keep your child calm and thinking rationally as well.
Your goal in communicating with their kids is to get the facts. Find out exactly what school officials and teachers are saying. Ask your kids what they're seeing and hearing. Determine what's rumor from facts. Remember that the school's priority is to keep your kids safe. Schools have communication systems (text, email, phone) to keep you informed of what's happening at school. Keep in mind that the school will let you know what's happening once all students are safe and the campus is secure.