Stoneman Douglas at Six Months

by Kay Coles James,
from Heritage Foundation,

On Wednesday, Stoneman Douglas opened its doors once again to a new school year. Again, like mothers and grandmothers nationwide, I want to know if anything has changed over the last half year. The intervening months have certainly been eventful for some of Stoneman Douglas’ students. They marched in Washington, D.C., gave fiery speeches, and took a 20-state “Road to Change” bus tour to register voters and push for gun control. They rubbed shoulders with celebrities, gave hundreds of interviews, and made passionate appeals for gun control. But as they settle back in at Parkland, will their school be any safer? Fortunately, the answer appears to be “yes” – and it’s not because of any media-focused bus tour. Instead, Broward County – like many other communities across America – has been working hard to improve school safety. Security upgrades at Stoneman Douglas include a new 12-foot security fence, improved classroom door locks, additional security guards, and continuous monitoring of the school’s video surveillance system. The school is even piloting the use of portable metal detectors. None of these measures is as glamorous as a press conference with a movie star. But each will meaningfully improve school safety.

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