Local school security being questioned following Texas shooting
OVERLAND PARK, Kan. (KCTV) – A local security expert cautions asking too many questions yet regarding the deadly school shooting in Uvalde, Texas.
“Until the investigation comes out and there’s a real detailed analysis, it’s kind of unfair to make a snap to judgement,” said John Douglass.
Douglass is the former Head of Security for the Shawnee Mission School District and retired Police Chief of Overland Park.
“Everybody involved is human,” Douglass said. “It’s a small town. We don’t know what their level of training was. We don’t know what their procedures were.”
Those are procedures that some, like Taylor Lutes and his mother Laura Sprinkles, are questioning following the shooting in Uvalde.
“It scared me pretty bad,” said Taylor.
Lutes is a Junior at Olathe West High School. Just this March, Olathe East High School had an active shooter situation.
“Anyone can just open the door for someone, you know?” said Taylor.
“I feel like schools are not secure,” said Laura. “There’s a lot of windows. There’s a lot of doors that are not secure.”
Douglass said threats happen multiple times in every school district each year.
“We will hear, ‘That kid is bringing a gun to school,’” said Douglass. “We find them, isolate them and take care of it.”
He said there are extensive safety protocols in place to protect students, from high-tech security to numerous drills conducted with students and staff.
“We put all of those efforts into it,” said Douglass. “Unfortunately, by the time the shooter shows up at the door, everything else has failed.”
He said, in the case of failure, that’s where armed police officers and armed school resource officers come into play.
“Fortunately, we have that in Kansas as well as Missouri,” said Douglass. “That kind of immediate action and confrontation is what’s generally called for.”
Douglass also said that, in the age of social media, it’s highly important to reinforce “if you see something, say something.”
“The students are your best resources, because they see it and they may know who is making the threat,” said Douglass.
Taylor and Laura said the unfortunate reality is school is no longer the safest place to be.
“I mean, we practice the drills and stuff but there’s only so much you can do,” said Taylor.
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