Local parents/school administrators react to Conn. shootings - KOTA Territory News

Local parents/school administrators react to Conn. shootings

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"A parent should not have to worry about sending their child to school," mother of two Sarah Brooks said.
 
If you're parent, you have probably put yourself in the shoes of Newtown, Connecticut parents.
 
"My heart breaks for them," Brooks said.
 
It's a terrifying situation, and unfortunately, it's not an isolated tragedy. There have been 31 school shootings since the deadly rampage at Columbine High School in 1999. These acts of violence have prompted schools across the nation to implement crisis plans, and in some cases redesign their buildings.
 
"So far, schools in Rapid City, South Dakota are right where the Department of Homeland Security says it needs to be," Sergeant Matt Sargent with the Pennington County Sheriff's Office said.


At Saint Thomas More High School you can't even enter the building without being buzzed in.
And, there are numbers on the windows, which are intended to help first responders in case of an emergency.  "You hate to say that it's never going to happen in your place, cause I'm sure every town says that - so we are just making sure we practice," Saint Thomas More High School Principal Wayne Sullivan said. "We are constantly working with principals, the superintendent of schools, reviewing crisis plans, testing crisis plans," Sargent added.


While these crisis plans may not ultimately stop a bad guy, Sargent says they will slow them down.

"I think the most difficult part of being a parent is that we can't control the world around them. We can just prepare them as best we can," mother of two Brandi Tonkel said.

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The Rapid City School District and the Catholic School System do two lockdown drills each year.

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