Today a high school in Florida was added to the ever-increasing list of schools who have endured a shooting in 2018 alone. This growing epidemic stirs two strong reactions within me.
As a human, a father, and a former teacher, I feel a great deal of sadness for those communities and families who are existing in these unimaginable circumstances right now. However, the other hat I wear is as a trainer and consultant for schools, where I work with them to become trauma-informed, to create an environment where every student is set up to succeed. The part of me that wears this hat possess a great deal of determination to make a change.
There is certainly no single reason or person to blame for this string shootings, but we need to begin to make tangible changes within schools, if we want to do anything to stop them. With each event, the stress levels of teachers, families and students all across the country is rising, and as those stress levels rise, the school actually becomes a more dangerous place.
Over the next several weeks, I plan to write several articles addressing this issue of school shootings.
We will first begin with healing, as we are a hurting nation right now. However, we also must move swiftly to action, taking tangible steps to take care of our staff, students, and families. We need to begin trying to understand what could possibly be at the root of some of these shootings, so we can address the real issues, and bring true change.
At Lakeside, our tagline is, “redefine the rest of your life.” We know that the world is filled with people who may eventually do horrible things. The next school shooter is alive as I type this, but we also must exist with the hope that he or she still has a choice. With the right steps in place, that child’s future can truly be re-defined, saving many others lives in the process.
Thanks for reading, and I hope you follow along over the next few weeks as we unpack this complex topic.
Josh MacNeill, Director of NeuroLogic Initiative