Safe School Environments | VideoRetha Colclasure | 12/19/2012
It was a simple change, really, that at least adds one measure of security to keep kids safe in school.
"We require doors to be locked. We`ve done small things," said Bismarck Schools safety coordinator Becky LaBella.
School hallways throughout the district look a little more sterile, now, as all classroom doors must be locked throughout the day.
"The only thing you can do is prepare," LaBella said.
But this isn`t the first step the school district has taken to prevent a tragedy at school.
"We have an emergency plan, constantly looking at it and reviewing it," LaBella said.
Schools hold different kinds of drills just about every month preparing for things like fires, tornadoes or even a missing child.
"We`re as well prepared as we can be for an event like this. Saying that anybody could be prepared for this may be an overstatement," said Riverside Elementary principal Jason Hornbacher.
As a principal and a parent, Hornbacher said after the school shooting in Connecticut, his thoughts first went to what can the schools here do to be better prepared.
One part of that was going over the emergency plan with staff so they knew what to do if that ever happened here.
"Reviewed plan with staff, make sure everybody understood it, answered questions."
But he knows it`s not up to the schools alone.
"Safety is a real team effort."
Part of that team, local first responders. Hornbacher says he was relieved the first day back after the shooting when he pulled up to school and saw a police car rolling by.
LaBella says school districts here will join others across the country in putting safety measures in place as we learn more about how to prevent incidents like the one in Connecticut.