Bad Things Happen to Good Schools

Posted by on March 7, 2010

When we hear of a school shooting or other high-profile school safety incident, it is normal for people to look to see what the school could have done to prevent it from occurring. 

But there is also a more subtle tendency in some people to believe there must be “something wrong” with the victimized school.  After all, these things don’t happen to “good schools,” now do they?

Yes, they do.

Bad things happen to good people and good schools.

I lead our post-crisis advising for a school district struck by a bladed weapons attack on students in a classroom.  My colleague and I advised a small school district after a student fired an AK-47  in the hallway during class change and then completed suicide.  Our team advised a school district after  hundreds of parents flocked to the school after rumors of a retaliation following a gang-related murder the night before in the community.

One common thread: They were all good school districts and good school-communities, with very good people.

If there is one lesson I have learned from all of our post-crisis consulting, it is that bad things happen to good people. 

Smart educators and safety officials recognize that “it can happen here” and they plan accordingly. 

Are you and your colleagues good people? Are you in a good school-community?  Are you prepared?

Ken Trump 

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