Letter to the editor: Let’s talk about how to make schools safe

Let’s talk about how to make schools safe

A great big thank you to Erin Thompson and Michael Armstrong and the Clarion for their very informative article, “After Parkland,” in Sunday’s paper. The importance of information regarding the influence of school shootings on all of us is number 1 on me and number 2 is where do we go from here? Their article describes the horror (to me) of the shootings of students in the last two decades, the complexity of the problems and the need for solutions to the problems. I use the word horror because shooting, wounding, and killing young people is unacceptable to me and I use it in response to some people’s unconsciously normalizing such actions.

The authors do a very nice presentation of students’ impressions and students’ ideas along with our need to include young people in the debate and the creation of solutions to what I see as a major problem in America. James Brooks and the Juneau Empire also do an excellent job of presenting young people’s experiences in protesting school shootings in Juneau High School last Wednesday along with their recommendation for us to listen closely to our young people and act to correct the problem.

School shootings, wounding and killing young people haven’t always been a major problem in America. Eighty years ago we entered school without fear of being shot, wounded or being killed even though guns were readily accessible. Forty to 30 years ago when I taught at Kenai and Soldotna high schools, I do not recall any fear of such violence. Many things have happened in the ensuing 30 years. Many times students and schools have been shorted by budget reductions brought about by legislators’ actions. One such result was the curriculum called Human Relations was removed from the courses offered at KPC and UAA. Maybe it is time to reinstate such a course. Our governmental leaders in Juneau and Washington might even benefit from such a course.

To the students of Alaska and America, I applaud your speaking up for things you know are right and encourage you to never give up pushing for safe schools. Safe schools are possible. You give me hope for our future. Change is necessary.

Hugh R. Hays

Soldotna

More in Opinion

Jodi Taylor is the board chair for Alaska Policy Forum. (Courtesy photo)
Private school, state reimbursement: family choice

By Jodi Taylor Alaskan parents have a legitimate right to choose the… Continue reading

t
Opinion: It’s time for bold action to protect our fisheries

Our fisheries feed the world and sustain our unique cultures and communities.

The logo for the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District is displayed inside the George A. Navarre Borough Admin Building on Thursday, July 22, 2021 in Soldotna, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Voices of the Peninsula: Hard to fill positions?

Paying poverty wages to support staff, secretaries and custodians is unacceptable yet routine behavior by our district

A copy of the State of Alaska Official Ballot for the June 11, 2022, Special Primary Election is photographed on May 2, 2022. (Peninsula Clarion staff)
Choosing a candidate – Who will best represent us in D.C.?

Voters are encouraged to do homework before casting a vote

Tourists watch as one of two cubs belonging to an 18-year-old sow black bear crosses the path between groups of tourists visiting the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center on Wednesday, July 18, 2018. (Michael Penn / Juneau Empire File)
Opinion: Tourists have pushed us to critical mass in parts of Juneau

I don’t go to the glacier in the summer now to hike or watch bears.

Sens. Shelley Hughes, R-Palmer, left, and Robert Myers, R-North Pole, read through one of 41 amendments submitted to the state’s omnibus budget bill being debate on the floor of the Alaska State Senate on Monday, May 9, 2022. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Opinion: The Alaska Senate’s foolish gamble

“All these conservative people just spent all our money”

Mobilizing for Action through Planning and Partnerships. (logo provided)
Point of View: A few ideas for Mental Health Awareness Month

What are some things you can practice this month and subsequently apply to your life?

Alex Koplin is a founding member of Kenai Peninsula Votes. (courtesy photo)
Voices of the Peninsula: 1 candidate dined, 47 to go

By Alex Koplin Last month, I wrote a satirical piece for the… Continue reading

Most Read