Generation Lockdown: Are schools safe from the growing threat of gun violence?


The PSA starts with one sobering message: “If there were an active shooter, you’d all be dead.”  The active shooter “expert,” school-aged Kayleigh, shines light on the reality that elementary, middle and high schoolers face with today’s gun legislation — the need for training on how to survive gun violence in a place that should be safe.

Because of the number of school shootings happening in the U.S. and the world around us, it’s difficult to ever feel secure at school. The threat of the shooting served as a reminder to always be cautious,” junior Kyndall Cherry said.

The term ‘Generation Lockdown’ was first coined by the student-led organization ‘March For Our Lives’, a growing movement with hundreds of chapters across the United States that started in response to the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.  They recently shared a PSA in order to promote the passing of Senate Resolution 42, or the Background Check Expansion Act, in order to close gun show loopholes and facilitate a safer world for school children.

In their PSA, Kayleigh recites lessons she had been taught in school on how to survive to a shocked adult crowd, things about hiding under tables and in bathroom stalls as powerful images of students in fear flash across the screen.  It raises questions on the safety and value of these procedures during active shooter events.

“Schools and staff should make sure that they correctly know and follow every part of the procedures that are already in place. Sometimes when panic sets in, people can forget about the safety procedures and this can cause accidents to occur,”  Cherry said.

While many schools are making more safety precautions in order to ensure students feel secure in schools, it becomes an issue of budget constraints and feasibility.  Is it possible to use key cards for the dozens of doors in high school campuses? Is there enough money for more security when we barely have enough for textbooks as it is?  These are questions few have the answers to. And as lawmakers stagnate their support for public education and young people remain ignored, movements like March For Our Lives become increasingly important to protect students that are threatened all across America.