U.S. Department of Education

Active shooter drills normalize atrocities

Active shooter drills normalize atrocities

The day of the mass shooting in San Bernardino, my son's high school was placed on a short lockdown. He was remarkably nonchalant when I picked him up. “It was just a Level One,” he said, brushing off my concerns. “Everything's fine now.”

It wasn't, in fact; the horror was still unfolding and would come even closer to home that afternoon, when law enforcement found a veritable arsenal in the assailants' Redlands townhouse. But I recognized my son's need to normalize what had happened.

I listened attentively as he explained the difference in lockdown levels: A Level One is when an active shooter is in the town or city; a Level Two is when the shooter is in the neighborhood; and...

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