Security class would improve school safety

Dec. 20, 2012 at 6:20 a.m.

Editor, the Advocate:

My son, Thomas Henderson, wrote the following. He is a highly trained Intel Officer stationed in Afghanistan. This is from his blog in answer to creating better security in our schools.

Personal Security 101 - How about having a paid teaching position whose function is to teach good security practices and also provide immediate response security for the school?

Imagine a trained former cop or soldier who is armed and can provide an immediate response in the event of a crisis? Would a "psychotic" even attempt to conduct a shooting if he or she knew a trained, armed individual was present at the location? I doubt it.

But I'm not talking about some mall cop waving a wand over each kid entering the school. On the contrary, the armed responder job is a secondary job. The primary job is educator. This person would be on the teaching staff just like any other teacher. Their classes would focus on proper security practices, from online, to home, to walking around the neighborhood streets.

Imagine your child sitting in a class learning how to avoid becoming the victim of an online kiddie predator, or learning how to properly answer a phone call without alerting the caller that Mom or Dad is out of the house. Can you see your child learning simple things like carrying cash in their front pocket, and not in a wallet, as a preventive measure against pick-pocketing? Can you imagine groups of kids in a discussion about how to choose the best route to walk home from school by staying near populated and well-lit areas? How about teaching how to set up an emergency cell phone number on speed dial? What about knowing what kinds of suspicious behavior to report, and who to report it to? How about learning first aid?

There are so many other examples. The curriculum could be tailored for all grades. Oh, and by the way ... if a nutcase, whack-job decides to come into the building that day to start killing kids, you have a trained individual who is able to respond immediately to such a threat.

I'd feel good about paying a little extra in school taxes to fund such a position.

Thomas Henderson, U.S. Army, stationed in Afghanistan - sent in by Rita Henderson, Victoria



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