MY TEACHER SAVED LIVES : As a student at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, it's hard for me to believe that the school on TV is mine.

NO ONE believes a school shooting will happen to them until they are scrambling to find their friends and family. In the end 17 families were not able to find their loved ones.

As AIbus Dumbledore, the wise headmaster of Harry Potter's Hogwarts, said, ''Happiness can be found in the darkest of times, if only remembers to turn on the light.''

My teachers are the light.

Through a combination of training and determination, they calmed the fear of some and saved the lives of others.

When schools across the country lower their flags and share our  darkness, they should share our light. Maybe heroism can't be taught, but preparedness certainly can be. Every teacher should have training for a school shooting like mine did.

On Wednesday, I took that message to President Trump at his White House listening session with the  students and parents from Parkland.

The next day, he announced his disapproval of my idea that schools should have more active shooter training. If I had known he felt this way, i would have told him my story.

Fifteen minutes before the dismal bell, the fire alarm rang and my class was evacuated after an administrator came on the intercom and gave the order.

By the time the administrator, made the announcement to take shelter in classrooms, we were too far away to turn back. So we kept going. The entire time, teachers were calling for their students to stay close as as they tried to count them all.

The teachers were calm, so the students tried to stay calm too.

My teacher for that class, Ms. Hitchcock, told us to keep walking. It was reassuring when when she took attendance and the entire class was present.

Ms. Hitchcock provided order in a moment of chaos. I knew at least some of my friends were safe.

Our school regularly has fire drills [as we did the morning of the shooting], tornado drills and lockdrown drills.

Just six weeks ago, my teachers did a training session on active shooter situations, known as Code Red. All doors must be locked, lights are turned off and students are kept in the classrooms away from windows.

For an type of emergency or driil, teachers must account for all their students. After the training, the teachers discussed with the students in each of their Classes what to do.

We were told where to hide and how to evacuate.

Not every school has the training we do. Eighteen states do not require their school districts to develop emergency plans, according to the Government Accountability Office. In the rest, 59 percent of the districts reported difficulty balancing emergency planning with other priorities.

There is no priority higher than saving lives.

The Global Operational Research on Schools and Safety continues to Part 2.

!WOW! thanks Carson Abt a junior at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, US.


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