Northern Tier educators learn new school safety measures from expert
MANSFIELD, PA (WENY) -- Northern Tier educators had the opportunity to learn about school safety at Mansfield University on Tuesday.
"I want the dialogue to start because we can't live in a world where we say, 'Oh it can never happen.' We know it can happen. It's just a matter of what and where," says Tara Freeman, who organized the seminar and serves as an educator in Tioga County, Pa.
The seminar featured retired FBI unit chief Scott Robinson, who now runs his own consulting and training service, Measured Response Group. He talked about how school officials can help keep their students and faculty safe in the event of an active shooter incident, or any other terror emergency.
"I hope that some of the key takeaways are that all violence is predictable and we need to change our school safety paradigms because what we're doing is not working because we still have school violence, we still have mass murders," Robinson explains.
Another topic discussed when it comes to school policy included whether or not teachers should be armed with guns. It's something Robinson says would not be an effective safety measure.
"I'm against arming teachers simply because of it is a tremendous responsibility, both physiologically and psychologically put on the teachers. It requires a lot of dedication and a whole lot of training and our police don't event get enough training. How can we possibly expect our teachers to?" he says.
And if a situation were to come up, Robinson emphasized the essential role adults must take.
"I believe we're training our kids too young. Kids need to remain innocent. We're taking that innocence away by teaching them about murderers and active shooters and stuff. Let them learn about that stuff later in life," Robinson says.
The former volunteer firefighter also talked about the role the media has when it comes to covering emergencies.
"I think the media needs to stop glorifying these murderers, because they're murderers, they're monsters. Don't say their name, don't give their picture. Don't give any information about them. Focus on the victims and focus on how their lives are affected. Don't pay any attention whatsoever to the perpetrators of these horrible crimes," Robinson explains.
Organizers say hope to make this seminar a yearly event to continue the important conversation.