My heart goes out to the families of all the people killed yesterday at Virginia Tech University. My son told me the news before I saw it on TV. He had heard it online from one of his friends in the States. We watched the pictures on the news when I came home from work, horrified.
As a parent I spend an inordinate amount of time worrying about j, but stupidly, I tend to feel that he is safe at school. Not so. I put myself in the place of parents of students at Virginia Tech, watching that news footage. j says I overreact. He already knows all the facts and statistics for other school related shootings. He thinks it's 'interesting'. I wonder what kind of enquiring mind I have raised.
When I visited schools in Calgary, Alberta as part of a group of teachers looking at the programme for gifted students out there I took part in a 'Lock Down' drill. We don't have these here, we have evacuation drills for fire etc. In the Lock Down, I worked with a teacher to lock the children into the classroom with us and build a barricade from furniture that we could shelter behind. We shut the blinds and were as silent as we could be in an attempt to hide our existence from 'the gunman'. I was terrified.
Maybe we have to revisit our thinking on this at school. I am so saddened by the need for such thinking.