Teachers Struggle to Reassure Students of Their Safety in Schools - NECN


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Teachers Struggle to Reassure Students of Their Safety in Schools



    Fla. Shooting Raises Fears and Concerns for Teachers

    Many teachers are now grappling with safety fears, concerned over their own ability to protect innocent students and identify dangerous ones.

    (Published Friday, Feb. 16, 2018)

    For current and former teachers in Massachusetts, the Florida school shooting is a sad and scary reality that has repeated itself all too often over the years.

    "Now, all of a sudden, you hear about school shootings, mass shootings every month," said Douglas Elementary School teacher Cheryl Katz.

    "I was heartsick, I was thinking of the parents that have to face going home to empty bedrooms, thinking of the teachers who have to see empty desks in their rooms, and the kids who've lost their friends," said retired Sutton Elementary School teacher Irene Hughes.

    Hughes, who now volunteers in the school, says teachers used to worry about a child being hurt on the playground, not whether students can safely hide from an intruder.

    "They seem to want to be reassured that it wasn't going to happen to them, and you try to give that reassurance, but you know in the back of your mind none of us know where it's going to happen next," Hughes said.

    "We do get emotional, it's hard," said Katz. "You have to just keep it together for the kids."

    Katz says on the flipside, it can be a difficult balance to identify a student who may have violent tendencies.

    "It's hard, you don't want to put that label on people, but at the same time, there are times when you see something about someone and it makes you think, 'Maybe I should say something,'" Katz said.

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