Northland Educators Preventing Future School Massacres

By KBJR News 1

August 23, 2013 Updated Aug 23, 2013 at 4:25 PM CST

Duluth, MN (NNCNOW.com) --- Northland educators were given a chance to learn about school campus safety on Thursday at the University of Minnesota, Duluth, from a worldwide expert on human aggression.

"Safety is essential in any school setting," said Tim LeGarde, UMD Police Sergeant.

"With 27 dead in Sandy Hook, guarantee you that this last year is a new all-time record dead in our schools. Our children are more likely to be killed by violence in school than every other possible cause of death put together," said Lt. Dave Grossman, expert on human aggression.

"I don't know what the right word... I don't know how to even describe, ya know, that tragedy," said Scott Drewlo, UMD Police Director.

Grossman is one of the world's foremost experts on violent crime and human aggression, and believes that teaching about gun violence is critical.

"When it comes to school safety, prevention of violence in our schools, Lieutenant Col. Grossman literally wrote the book on all of that," said LeGarde.

At the seminar Grossman outlined steps to remember when encountering school violence.

First he says we must get rid of denial, and second we must try to deter the crime before it happens.

"We've never had a multiple homicide in a school when there was an armed cop present in that building. If there is somebody in the building that can shoot back the killer just doesn't even try."

Next, he says, leaders must be aware of the signs that someone could perpetrate violence in schools.

"We can spot these killers. We know what they're looking for. They're looking for the weak link," said Grossman.

Lastly Grossman says is the importance of quick reaction.

"Keep those exterior doors locked. Demand it of your kid's schools."

Lieutenant Grossman says that if we as a society want to stop bullying and decrease violent crimes on campus, cell phones must be taken out of classrooms.

"No cell phones in the school. They're a disaster," he says.

When children have a cell phone at school Grossman says their first reaction is to call or text their parents.

"Your kid's going to die 'cause we can't get an ambulance within a block of that school 'cause 100 terrified parents have all beat the ambulance to the punch 'cause the kids have called them."

Grossman encourages parents to forbid their children to take cell phones into the classroom.

He says small changes like that can have a huge impact.

K-12 teachers, from schools across the Northland, attended the seminar in the hopes of preventing future school massacres.

Elsa Robins
erobins@kbjr.com