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Local districts respond to Texas school shooting by enhancing school safety measures

Nineteen children, a majority of whom had not yet turned 11 years old, and 2 teachers were killed in a horrific mass shooting Tuesday in Uvalde, Texas.

BUFFALO, N.Y. — Nineteen children, with a majority of them under the age of 11 years old, and two of their teachers were killed in a horrific mass shooting in Uvalde, Texas, on Tuesday.

It's a nightmare no parent should have to face, dropping your child off at school and never seeing them again.

In response, local school districts are taking action. Many of them are enhancing their safety and security measures to ensure families that schools are a safe place to learn.

Hamburg Superintendent Mike Cornell says Wednesday was an extremely tough day for all schools.

"Everybody who works in a school today was just doing whatever it took to help children process, if they needed time and space to do that," Cornell said. 

While many schools have safety measures in place, the question is whether those measures are sufficient enough given the rise in school shootings. 

"Schools, certainly here in Hamburg and schools all across Western New York, have done all kinds of things to make sure that schools are much more difficult to penetrate," Cornell says. "Reconstructing entry ways, establishing single points of entry, onboarding more school resource officers, and enacting multiple updated safety protocols, all designed to keep violence at bay."

But the reality is, these mass shootings are still happening. 

The elementary school shooting in Uvalde now ranks as the deadliest school mass shooting in a decade. 

Parents are terrified and in need of reassurance that classrooms are safe spaces for their children.

"Job one is to make sure everybody that walks in the door in the morning goes home safely to their families in the evening. Nothing is more important than that," Cornell said.

According to EducationWeek, there have already been 27 school shootings in 2022. Last year, there were 34. 

Gov. Kathy Hochul announced during a news conference on Wednesday that she wants state police and local law enforcement visiting schools and doing daily check-ins "every single day from today until the end of the school year."

That happened in Hamburg schools for the first time on Wednesday. 

"We had a couple of village police officers over the course of their regular duties of the day walking through our schools," Cornell says. 

Buffalo Public Schools also announced changes to their security measures, effective immediately.

In a statement, also posted on Twitter, BPS District says the following changes have been made:

Credit: Buffalo Public Schools

Other districts are also reanalyzing their current safety measures.

The question is, will this be enough?

Conversations about controversial gun control laws are center stage right now. When will lawmakers decide enough is enough? When will action be taken?

Only time will tell.


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