“I don’t want it to happen again,” said Miah Cerrillo—a 4th grader in one of two adjoining Robb Elementary School classrooms where 19 children and two teachers died. You can watch her testimony provided by C-Span and read an article at Education Week, including her recorded testimony.
When Miah is asked if she feels safe, you see her shaking her head no and saying no. She is not alone in this feeling of safety. It is felt by students everywhere. They may not have experienced the level of trauma Miah has, but they have experienced some form of trauma to challenge safety.
Safety is a basic need. Most of our decisions and actions are based on meeting our basic needs. The drive to meet safety is essential for all of us. We may not be in constant danger, but our need to feel safe conditions to be completed.
Think of all of the ways safety is used in your life. We purchase insurance; we have smoke detectors, safety guidelines, safety reports on the vehicles we are buying, lifeguards on duty, safety glass, and safety warnings, and my list of examples could continue as you add to this list as well. Safety is an essential basic need.
Why then are we struggling with safety? If we know how important security is to our basic growth needs, why are we taking it away from the children, families, staff, and communities we serve?
Are we allowing biased, money, politics, and selfish “so-called” power to get in the way of making important decisions to bring safety to the center of what needs to be done to help get our foundation back before it cracks completely?
Please message me if you need help with Connected Community Calendar and hosting a meeting to begin these talks. I have done this with success as we started to do this in the last district I worked in and worked to help bring families together with the community. It can work with stability and consistency. Inviting all organizations, churches, and associations helps ensure you are working together to help each other. When everyone knows what others are doing, more days can be filled with something for someone to do. Keeping everyone actively involved is a great way to keep the community going.
Building solid relationships is essential to school safety. Everyone knowing each other in the community helps us see through different lenses to act on any signs we see. Being proactive is what we need, not reactive.