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School Shootings Keynote

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1 School Shootings Keynote
This slide show is a compilation of slides and notes used by Tom McIntyre when presenting at a conference in Wisconsin in March 2007. The material may be a bit out of synchronization due to the combining of notes and slides. Dr. Mac is available to present sessions on school-wide and classroom practices that help to prevent violence within and against schools. Color code: A red punctuation mark on a slide indicates that the slide material has stopped developing. Click to expose the next component of the slide. A green punctuation mark indicates the end of a slide. Click to view the next slide.

2 Speaker Notes Good day. As opposed to a bad one, like April 20, 1999.
That late afternoon through night is indelibly etched in otherwise heavily perforated memory. I was taking a break from some office work brought home, I set my still-steaming microwaved chicken pot pie & my too warm to be called iced tea on the toy-laden coffee table & picked up the TV remote. I always start my viewing with CNN to see if anything important is happening anywhere... You know: - Which celebrity is going into rehab or apologizing for saying something insensitive; - Which muscle-bound athlete is denying the use of steroids; - What’s happening to poor Britney -...Am I STILL on Mr. Blackwell’s worst dressed list…). I quickly realize that a major news story, this one of epic proportions, will be occupying our television screens for several days, maybe weeks. I didn’t know then that the event would emotionally haunt us for years to come.

3 Speaker Notes That afternoon’s happenings held particular interest for me as an educator. Now, as a parent, it holds an even tighter grasp on certain parts of my psyche: “It” being: Kids killing kids in a school in Littleton, Colorado. I sat aghast through the late afternoon, & into the evening ...& late night watching the non-stop coverage of the astonishing event, & trying to make sense of what had happened. Dumbstruck, I watched the - repeated showings of the same appalling video clips, -the content-empty interviews, - the superficial analysis, & - the uniformed speculation. It was numbingly redundant... yet sadly & enormously gripping.

4 Speaker Notes In a harrowing short period of time,
- 2 high-school seniors, -setting propane tank bombs, & - wielding guns & knives as they walked their school’s hallways with impunity, set out on their horrific mission to kill hundreds… HUNDREDS of their peers. When all was nearing the end, 12 youth & 1 teacher lie lifeless. Self-inflicted gunshot wounds then ended 2 more young lives: Those of the terribly misguided boys whose names… Klebold & Harris, have become - for many, synonymous with evil; - admired icons of validated rage for many other disconnected youth; - and calls for action on the part of some of us.

5 Columbine High School

6 Speaker Notes The “Columbine Massacre”, as it would come to be known, was & still remains, the greatest loss of life in America’s long & tragic history of kids killing kids in a place where idyllically cognitive & physical challenges are the foci. It happened in a harborage where personal safety is presumed, & the welfare of kids is our life’s mission… A safe port where the schoolhouse doors are supposed to serve as a breakwater from society’s stormy seas that rage beyond. Each new copy-cat episode evokes those same painful - images -memories, - & feelings. Each brings again to the forefront multitudinous questions... for children & the educational professionals who serve them: Who would do such a thing? - What could drive someone to engage in such a heinous act? - How can I be sure that this horror won't happen to me? - Is anyone really safe anywhere?

7 Newspaper Caption: “Weston High School students visit the scene of the shooting Friday in Cazenovia, Wis.”

8 Speaker Notes Recently, the unthinkable happened close to YOUR home:
Two days after his Wednesday anger management class, a kid carrying 2 loaded firearms entered his school. I read in large part, the words of a blog reporter, Kathy K.: On Friday, September 29, 2006, 15-year-old Erik Hainstock drove to Weston Schools in Cazenovia, Wisconsin armed with a shotgun and a .22-caliber revolver that he allegedly took from his home. Mr. Dave Thompson, a custodian, observed Hainstock entering the building... and then holding the shotgun to the face of a teacher who questioned what he was doing. Hainstock allegedly replied ‘I’m going to kill someone’. At that point, Mr. Thompson yanked the shotgun out of the boy’s hands. Hainstock broke free. Thompson noticed that Hainstock was going for something in his pocket and told the teacher to run, yelling that he thought the youth had another gun. The teacher ran for the office to call the “code blue” to lock down the school. Thompson ran out the door to call It was then that Principal John Klang confronted Hainstock. That action resulted in the untimely death of, by all accounts, a dedicated & valued mentor & colleague.

9 Comments regarding Mr. John Klang from a USA Today and Wisconsin State Journal articles
"He was really nice," she said, choking back tears. "If we had a problem he'd listen to us. He never raised his voice or anything to any of the students.“ Resident Laurie Rhea, 42, said Klang spent last weekend at a gas station washing cars for a homecoming fundraiser. "It's horrible. All the kids just loved him," she said. "I always thought he got along with Mr. Klang. If Eric had trouble they would talk, and things would get better.“ (Eric Schneider, classmate of Eric Hainstock) . The proposed Klang Memorial

10 Speaker Notes (continuing from the blog) Mr. Klang rushed to disarm him. In the ensuing struggle Klang was shot three times. Despite being mortally wounded he managed to continue the strugge & eventually disarmed Hainstock, kicking the gun out of reach. Another teacher watching through his classroom door window, and according to some accounts several students, rushed into the hallway and wrestled Hainstock to the ground. They restrained him until taken into custody by law enforcement authorities who arrived on the scene within minutes. (end of blog report) Another more massive plan by 3 boys in Green Bay was foiled only days before its abhorrent implementation, when a fellow student, Matt Atkinson, informed the assistant principal. The school has since set up a scholarship fund in his name, hoping to bring - attention -admiration, - & emulation to those who prevent school shootings. PAUSE

11 Speaker Notes In the former incident, you folks have experienced, directly or indirectly, the violation of all we hold to be sacred… A tragedy has befallen a colleague, -one of our own, - by a student he was dedicated to serving. These events inevitably bring forth a swirled multitude of emotions that ebb & flow depending on - the day, - the settings, - & the situations in which we find ourselves. PAUSE These situations are often analyzed from a 3 circle perspective:

12 Levels of Connection

13 Speaker Notes . Someone who spends the day in the school
Witness to the event Someone who spends the day in the school Knowing someone in the school . I would add a 4th concentric circle… (Click) - containing Wisconsin school professionals. - Members of the larger educational clan. . I supposed I’m in the 5th ring…. (Click) Educator. - Far removed in geography from the event, but close in spirit & mission. Far removed from the actual situations, but holding a stew pot of feelings, some always intense like compassion & concern (for all kids…even the shooters) Some that I try to subdue like - anger - rage, - …revenge. Sprinkled in is a bit of sadness, fear, disgust, anxiety, & other feelings that are hard for me to identify.

14 Speaker Notes We all need a productive outlet for feelings such as these. I was so moved by the events in Littleton, CO, that I immersed myself in research & writing regarding the impact of incidents such as these on children & school-based professionals. The result was a web page pertaining to school shootings. I posted it on my web site, hoping that the 1400 teachers a day who visit it could glean something useful & be able to address issues in their schools. There is stays to this day... Poorly presented visually (I’m using circa 1996 software & circa late 1986 understanding of web site design), but I hope the content is helpful to my fellow educators. As one teacher from Greece wrote to me: “There is some wonderful information on your site Dr. Mac, but WHEW, you’ve got the UGLIEST site on the internet!” Any offers of free help in web site design are gratefully accepted. A 6th ring in our model would be the general public…Sometimes supportive of us; Other times not. But in these tragic situations, they too view the recurring heroic actions of educators in these situations to be notable.


16 Speaker Notes PAUSE I accepted the offer to visit with you today because of my persistent professional pre-occupation with events such as the ones mentioned & my continuing self-imposed assignment to serve my colleagues as I am able. The title…. Emerging From The Fog Bank: Resetting our Course with a Newfound Clarity of Purpose, came to me while I was first thinking of what to say here today. Please allow me to digress a bit. While I think that the similarities to schools will be vaguely evident, when I’m done regaling you with a salty sea yarn, I’ll make a point of connecting the dots & relating it all back to our session’s focus. I recollected a mission ordered to undertake while serving our country in the Coast Guard. - Semper Paratus! It means “Always readyl.” - Sage words for educators too. More recently, I’ve been chanting the Marine Corps motto: “Semper Fidelis”…”Always faithful”. My wife makes me say it before I go out the door. Hoo Rah. Anyway, I was the coxswain, the captain so to speak, of a 30 foot twin-diesel engine utility boat based in New London CT.


18 Speaker Notes Our usual daily duty was Port Security; Patrolling by the Navy Submarine facility there. Periodically, we’d escort one of the nuclear attack subs as it negotiated the channel on its way to or from its patrol. Other times we embarked on search & rescue endeavors in stormy seas. More often, we’d find ourselves - Towing a becalmed sailboat back to harbor - Seeking out the source of pollution - or Conducting courtesy safety checks ... Although... the main highlight of a warm summer day was cruising past the local beaches & using our binoculars to search for scantily-clad sun bathers. & you thought Coasties cruising off of your beach on Lake Michigan were on safety patrol! Ah...summmer. *Winter brought a wholly different kind of waterborne duty.

19 Racine, WI: 36 foot Coast Guard Motor Life Boat

20 Speaker Notes - This isn’t the boat of which I spoke. Mine was 6 feet shorter! It does, however, give a good idea of what it’s like to be on an open boat in the flow ice. One particular late afternoon on a frigid January day, we were directed to take some large batteries out to the lighthouse station that protruded proudly from an enormous rock outcropping in the Long Island Sound. There, electricians were struggling to bring the darkened beacon back to brilliance. The urgency of the mission was evident...a dense fog shrouded the area. It was nearing dusk by the time we were bundled up (No immersion suits or heated boat cabins in the old days), warmed up the twin diesels, threw off the lines stiffened with ice, & headed our trusty craft southward to push against the incoming brackish tide. Cruising the 2½ miles to the mouth of the river & the entrance to the Sound was a visual, mental, & physical struggle. In the vast, dark, grey blanket that enveloped us, the usual sights were indistinct or absent; sounds were amplified & distorted.

21 I navigated by chart & compass as best I could while my 2 crew members shined lights into the haze in a mostly futile attempt to stimulate reflective tape on the channel buoys. Recognizing the need to reassure my crew with a brave face, I recollected the telling of a tale of a Captain of an 3-masted privateer, who when he heard from the crow’s nest that an enemy ship had been sited off the starboard quarter, said to the cabin boy “Bring me my red shirt.” The young man was perplexed, but fetched the bright red garment. After the captain brilliantly directed his men to victory, he was asked by the boy why he wore a red shirt. The captain replied: “If I were wounded in battle, my blood would not show, & the crew would continue to fight.” While in reality, I was attired totally in Coast Guard blue & black, in my mind that cold night I was wearing scarlet!

22 On nights such as this, it was standard procedure to use the radar scope to negotiate the buoy-marked course. Not that night though…The upper right quadrant of the round screen was totally blank! It had been non-functional for a couple of weeks as we waited for the Navy to send a technician to make the necessary electronic repairs. Realizing the danger of cruising into the unknown, I periodically bought the boat to a halt, and spun it around slowly so that whatever existed in front of us & to the right (from 12 o’clock to 3 o’clock if imagine a clock face) was now revealed in a working section of the circular scope That stationary feat, while necessary for navigational precision & safety, also placed us at risk for sucked up gathering ice chunks into the tubes that brought water to the jacket that surrounded our engines & kept them cool. If the tubes became blocked, no water would reach the cooling jackets. A “diesel runaway” was then a definite possibility… An uncontrollable escalation of engine RPM’s until the darn thing blows up.

23 Motivated by self preservation, my crew diligently pushed the ice chunks away as best they could with the boat hooks. Anyway, unbeknownst to us at that moment, the remaining ¾ of the damaged radar screen was showing small buoys as being large, resembling the blips indicating tanker ships; & large objects as being small, like marker buoys. Distances were also inaccurately calibrated. We adjusted our course to what we thought was the next buoy, & crawled along with a crewman sitting on the bow. He alternated between placing a wet newspaper page over a hand-held search light in order to create a yellowish glow that cut the fog better than the white light that got reflected back into our eyes, & exposing that white light in an attempt to excite the buoys’ reflective tape. As we neared the marker buoy, my right ear received my radar man’s terrified shout: “Holy sh…COW! It’s coming at us. It’s not the buoy. It’s the ferry!” He was not referring to Tinkerbell… Nor was he speaking of my fairy Godmother whose wings must have frosted up, or maybe she got lost in the haze… because she wasn’t with me that night at that moment.

24 He was referring to the imminent arrival into our port bow of the massive, car carrying Long Island to New London Ferry. There’s a 2nd part to the story about the captain who wore the red shirt... A few days later, upon hearing from the crow’s nest that 20 enemy ships had been sighted off the starboard quarter, the cabin boy rushed to the captain’s side anticipating the order to fetch the red shirt. Instead, he received a new command: “Bring me my Brown pants.” Reacting to the imminent danger, I yelled to my bow-mounted crewman to “Hold on!”, pulled the wheel hard to starboard, & gunned the engines. We looked back to witness the New London Ferry, enormous in it’s presence, traversing the spot where our boat sat just a few moments earlier. It then vaporized into the night as quickly as it had materialized.

25 Wobbling wildly on the Ferry’s wake, we closed our gaping mouths & unfixed our wide-eyed stares from that still churning spot. I turned to the crewman next to me, & we shared a befuddled & bewildered exchange of glances. Meanwhile, the fella hanging onto the bow rails was yelling into the darkness…cursing - Several government agencies, - Ferry boat radar operators, … - & Himself… for joining up with the Guard! Anyway, we contacted the ferry’s wheelhouse via short wave radio, & after a rather interesting opening to our static-ridden conversation, they used their radar to give us approximate coordinates & distance to the lighthouse. This sharing of knowledge was a not-so-apparent-at-the-time example of interagency cooperation to reach one’s goal after experiencing a near catastrophe.

26 New London Ledge Light Light pattern: Fog horn:
Three white flashes (followed by) One red flash Repeating every 30 seconds Fog horn: Two blasts every 20 seconds

27 To make a long story short (Too late?):
We located the lighthouse, off-loaded our cargo to a couple of life-vested, rope-secured fellow Coasties whenever our boat rose to the top of one of the swells that rushed over the low, thin catwalk upon which they stood as best they could. The lunging, lurching rise & fall of our bow, slightly out of sync with the swells, sent frigid waves rushing back over the deck toward us, soaking our heavy cotton clothes. Later, the ice-encrusted lashes of our eyes would lift to see the quickly circulating streams of light approach & brightly flash to our stern before leaving us. Our frost-nipped ears heard the periodic double belch of the fog horn drown out the chugging of our twin diesels. PAUSE Hypothermic & emotionally exhausted, we arrived back at our berth after coming within feet of running headlong into a dock at the sub base (I wonder what it costs to reimburse the Navy for scratching & denting one of their nuclear-powered attack vessels).


29 Although untrained & unprepared for the hazards that presented themselves that day, we did what needed to be done in the face of fear. Mission accomplished: Partly due to - bravery, - skill, -& quick thinking… Partly due to dumb luck. Success was also partly due to cooperation with another group of professionals who operated in the same waters as us. We recounted our story to the Officer of the Watch,& later to a panel of safety officers sent to investigate the incident. Our report to superiors resulted in positive changes locally & nationwide: - To standard procedures; - To our craft - To our training; - To crew comfort & safety, - To cooperation with other agencies concerned with the same issues as us. It’s rewarding to think that our close encounter with catastrophe was a stimulus for positive changes.

30 While the comparisons might be strained at times, a summary glance back at the events of that winter night… & nearly all school incidents… reveal several of the same characteristics & implications. Both involved skilled professionals operating in familiar waters, but without the preparation & resources necessary for optimal response in a frightening & unexpected situation. Both point out the need for: - Better systems to handle those possible episodes, - Designated standard procedures - Greater communication with other agencies, - The necessary equipment to safeguard those in “the boat”, - & Better training & treatment for the “crew”.

31 Weston High School in Cazenovia, to their credit, had already made progress in that direction.
According to news reports, “Code Blue” was called over the speakers. Teachers looked at their code sheets & responded by locking doors & hiding the pupils. FINALLY… a valid use of school speakers during class time,… not just office staff taking it upon themselves to summon lost administrators & announce the lunch menu during my World History class.

32 And if we should ever find ourselves enveloped in the errie & disconcerting world of an educational “thermal inversion”,we’ve got 2 choices: Get through it or Rise above it. Then use our experience & newfound clarity to reset our course. That is where we find ourselves now. Both my nautical situation & your 2 episodes point to the need to prepare for the worst case scenario, …while still enjoying the calmness (interrupted by few ripples & swells) of a typical school day.

33 Since the occurrence of your two events, I understand that many well-intentioned changes have been suggested…some more viable & thoughtful than others. Some suggestions, mostly school security measures, have been implemented. Many of you have studied up on the issues. However, many of us still operate in an informational fog when it comes to assaults on schools. Our thinking, & therefore, out planning are often clouded by: - Mixed & intense emotions, - Inaccurate perceptions, - & Non-validated conclusions.

34 Misconceptions abound about the various aspects of school shootings:
- The shooters, - Their home life, - The warning signals, - The prevalence, - & How to best protect our kids. Today, in the remainder of this keynote, I’d like to help dissipate the haze of misinformation surrounding the school-based events. Acquiring accurate information allows us to engage in productive discussions & leads to better prevention & reaction strategies. Clear sight can also give us clarity of insight. It can help us avoid running aground on the misinformation shoals while we navigate directly to our destination of creating safe & welcoming schools.

35 Yes… Opinions on these matters are spouted everywhere.
Surprisingly, they sometimes differ from my own. That’s OK. It’s America, & Constitution grants them the right to voice their opinion… - even when it is opposed to mine! As an upstanding citizen of this great country, I respect that right! They have the right… To be wrong! E Pluribus Unum! Just kidding, of course…I haven’t been elected President yet… although I’ll be announcing my candidacy from this podium later today… Just in time for the Wisconsin primary. Certainly, we’re entitled to our views, but we also have an obligation to make them informed opinions. Let’s take a look at what we know...

36 Apparitions in the Fog: Real or Imagined?
Often heard claims: School attacks are increasing in number and ferocity. In its 2002 report, the Secret Service (in conjunction with the USDOE) created a typical profile of shooters. They’re evil, crazy, OR normal kids who just “snapped.” Most school attacks occur without warning. Usually nobody knew that it was going happen. “Zero tolerance”, metal detectors, and security guards are necessary parts of today’s educational experience. There’s not much else schools can do to protect those inside. So…True or False?

37 T-F: School attacks are increasing in number and ferocity.
School violence (murder, robbery, rape, assault) decreased during the 1990s. (Defoe, et. al. 2002) Violent crime in schools is now ½ of the 1994 rates. School Crime is now equivalent to 1980 rates. (Snyder, 2004). Given domestic violence rates, students are safer in school than at home. (Cornell, 2006). 12-20 deaths per year since 2000 in school violence 30 deaths per year (average) in the 1990s An educator can expect a shooting at his/her school once every 12,804 years. (National School Safety Council, 2002)

38 Speaker notes for “School attacks are increasing in number” slide (previous to that slide)
- School shootings are significant, but extremely rare happenings. - Despite hyperbolic reporting in the media, there is no epidemic. -I certainly am cognizant that the deaths of students & educators a year are worthy of note, but I mention the statistic to show that our perception of the number of shootings may be inaccurate. I suspect some thought the # was less, but… Less than 1% of child homicides occur from when the student leaves home for school to when he or she returns home. McIntyre, maybe it’s not so much the numbers… as it is the nature of the episodes…

39 T-F: Forget the rates, it’s the randomness and unpredictability of the acts that are scary. Rarely does someone know that a school attack is about to occur. In Bethel, AK, a crowd of students gathered in the library to watch another carry out his threat to kill himself. When the event was over, one adult and one student (not the shooter) were dead. In Cazenovia, WI, Erik Hainstock told a friend that the principal would not “Make it through homecoming.” "I think some kids might have known what was going on," he said. "I'd heard things up at school. There were a lot of rumors.“ James Nowak, Eric Hainstock’s special education teacher As reported in the Wisconsin State Journal 3/18/07 In Green Bay, WI, a student prevented an imminent attack by telling school officials.

40 Notes accompanying previous slide
- Secret Service Report (2002): Previous to 3/4 of shootings other students had specific information or valid suspicions that a shooting was going to happen.  - Before vast majority of attacks someone else knew …almost always other kids: - friends - schoolmates - siblings - Given often-found code of silence among adolescents, info rarely reached adults: parents school personnel - law enforcement - If we could convince kids to report what they know or suspect, perhaps most school shootings could be prevented… as was the case in last point on the slide. Here’s the Newspaper Report: “Thursday, September 14, Matt Atkinson, a 17-year-old senior, told an associate principal at Green Bay East High School on the day after the Montreal college shooting that a Columbine-like plot was being planned by two teens. It was said to be a "suicide-by-cop" plot. Police arrested the boys and then found sawed-off shotguns, automatic weapons, pistols, ammunition, several bombs, bomb-making materials, camouflage clothing, helmets, gas masks, and suicide notes. Brown County District Attorney John Zakowski said: "This was a Columbine waiting to happen."

41 OK… Then it’s the assailants that are unpredictable
OK… Then it’s the assailants that are unpredictable. These kids are either Crazy Or evil.

42 - Let’s look at the latter…

43 They’re Evil Whether we believe that human beings are “born evil”, “born good”, or “tabla rosa”, we then become products of our environment. The home life of shooters is invariably disordered: All shooters.

44 Notes to accompany previous slide (“Evil”)
When we arrive on this granite planet: - Evil: As per original sin in Bible, & philosophy of Hobbs & Freud - Good: As per the teachings from the Koran/Qur'an - Blank slate: As per the philosophy of Locke, Berkeley, & Hume - NONE of the shooters was without troubles in family relationships. - Life may look superficially normal in the homes of shooters, but one doesn't have to scratch very far below the surface to find significant problems with the families… - severe marital discord - lack of supervision, & - ineffective, - distorted, - &/or hostile child rearing practices (including physical & sexual abuse). - Shooters have voiced feelings of being disregarded/socially neglected at home. - They were not valued & welcomed in their own families! - They were not given warmth in life’s incubator.

45 He Was “Crazy” From the 2002 USSS/USDOE report: 1/3 of attackers had been seen by a mental health professional. 1/5 of attackers had been diagnosed with a psychological condition. Substance abuse was not prevalent. Previous to the event, shooters demonstrated a need for mental health assistance, showing some history of: Extreme depression. Pronounced desperation, despondency & loss of hope. Suicidal ideation and/or attempts.

46 Notes to accompany previous slide (“Crazy”)
- Pejorative term for M.I. - DSM American Psychiatric Association Diagnostic Criteria - The words of Sigmund Freud seem apropo here:

47 “Homicide is suicide turned inside out.”

48 Excerpts from Wisconsin State Journal 3/18/07
Officials had been concerned about Hainstock since preschool, interviews and documents revealed. In a criminal child abuse complaint against Shawn Hainstock, Eric's father, filed five years ago, Sauk County prosecutors said the boy "has a medical condition affecting (his) behavior and that the child's family can no longer afford the medication or counseling (he) needs for his condition." As part of a deferred prosecution agreement, Shawn Hainstock pleaded no contest to a lesser charge of battery. Years ago, Nowak said, the boy's preschool teacher and a Reedsburg elementary school teacher had been worried about him. "They had concerns way back then" about drawings Hainstock made and other things, Nowak said. Note: James Nowak was Eric Hainstock’s special education teacher.

49 Notes to accompany previous slide (“Excerpts”)
- Erin Hainstock, long-known for his “acting out” behavior, was an exception to that rule, in that he was receiving services… for a while… until his family couldn’t afford the pharmaceuticals & counseling anymore. - We tend to see depression in kids presenting itself in either - the withdrawn clinical form - an acting out / risky behavior manifestation - Psychologists typically view the introverted, reclusive youngsters to be more emotionally disabled than those who have conduct disorders. The belief is that acting out is an attempt (however inadequate & distorted) to handle internal stress. It serves as a pressure relief valve, letting off some of the emotionally overheated steam. - But in Eric Hanstock’s case,the valve was inadequate for the job, & the top blew off.

50 T-F: Whatever the reason, these kids ‘Snap’
T-F: Whatever the reason, these kids ‘Snap’. In the blink of an eye, they “freak out”. “Snapping” is rarely an impulsive & sudden act Typical: Idea forms Plan develops Plan changes Weapons located and procured (Regarding school shootings) "People snap when their ability to cope is overwhelmed." Dr. Robert Trestman, director of the Center for Correctional Mental Health Services Research at the University of Connecticut Health Center.

51 Notes to accompany previous slide (“Snap”)
- Secret Service (2002) report: Almost 95% of school shooting events were planned from a few days up to a full year in advance. - Overwhelmed by the rejection issues in their lives, school shooters didn’t have sufficient coping skills. Sad…It’s something that we know how to teach. - These youngsters, suffering without adequate support: - “snapped”… slowly - then struck out against the stressors… -other kids -often educators. - But where do these kids get these weapons… especially the firearms?

52 Where would a kid get a gun?
Nearly all had easy access to a gun Most acquired them from their homes Cazenovia: Pried open the safe containing the shotgun with a screw driver & used a key to open the father’s locked bedroom to obtain the hand gun. Nearly all had used them before. Equation: Exposure to violence (real & media) + being bullied + easy access to weapons =  Tragedy

53 Notes to accompany previous slide (“Where get gun?”)
- There seems to be a formula for disaster here. - FBI profilers report media violence as a factor for some people…not me or you. -What we find entertaining is an instigator to negative action for others. - Heck, some people are moved to violence against others by their interpretation of their holy books. - As for Bullying, the different & the weak are often targeted. - An emotionally crushing experience when it happens periodically… - Think of the times it happened to you in your childhood & adolescence. - When the bullying is persistent & never-ending, it is destructively traumatizing. *(Bullied Girl Video Clip on NPR IF time) - Nationwide, 2/3 of shooters interviewed by the Secret Service - felt persecuted or attacked by others, - making it their motivation for violent revenge - In the past, bullied youngsters cowered in the presence of their tormentors.  - Today, with easier access to weapons, the victimized can strike back… in deadly ways. - Imagine… - Kids being able to make bombs ! ! - Couldn’t do in my day… - Maybe while looking in the Army-Navy Surplus Store for canteen for Boy Scout camping trip, I’d see some military manuals, but finding one on improvised munitions was unlikely. - Now its front & center with a quick GOOGLE search. - Mixed perceptions regarding whether bullying was addressed well at Weston HS -Some say “yes” while others counter that claim.

54 Wisconsin State Journal 3/18/07
He (Eric Hainstock) told police he was also upset because he felt teachers didn't stop students who harassed him, the complaint said. But Nowak (Hainstock’s special education teacher) said the youth was unlikely to have been the butt of jokes. "He wasn't picked on," he said. "He was the one who would have picked on people." The description of Hainstock as victimized is "a total joke," he said. "We stand up for these kids (special education students) as much as possible. We are advocates for the kids. If they are being picked on, we try to stop it.“ Schneider (classmate) said that Hainstock got picked on a lot, but also picked on kids and would push and fight with other children. "Eric dished it out and went after other people," Schneider said. *Identifiers written in orange and placed in (parentheses) were added by Tom McIntyre

55 Speaker Notes - While schools can't control 2 of the major components of school shootings, we can eliminate one of the necessary ingredients: Bullying. - This requires bully-prevention programs. - Tough penalties for taunting, mocking, beating, & intimidating others. - Accompanied by enrollment of all parties: - Aggressors - Victims - Witnesses in coursework that promotes personal change. Connecticut and Illinois have taken the lead in this area, requiring that all schools have comprehensive bullying prevention plan that includes education for all students. - All kids need to - Hear - Understand - & Come to believe the meaning of the statement of the recently deceased former Lieutenant Governor of Missouri, Harriet Woods…one politician who seems to have had her head on straight: - “You can stand tall without standing on someone. - You can be a victor without having victims.”

56 Speaker Notes (continued)
- As for the part of the equation pertaining to firearms, - I’m making no pronouncement for or against gun ownership… - Not my place to do so. - As Sgt. Friday would say on Dragnet when someone started to offer opinions??? (“Just the facts ma’m.”) (Don’t call me ma’m!) - Federal estimates suggest there is a gun in ½ the homes in America. - That means that kids are likely to have a firearm in their home, OR enter a home that has one. - Consider that: - Most firearms are not secured with any sort of lock. - Almost all kids in gun-owning homes - know where the gun is located & - can get to it. - 20/20 illustrated this point: - Asked 10 kids whose parents said wouldn’t know where gun stored. - All 10 took the reporter to the hiding place. - If locked up in a room, drawer, or safe,… or trigger-locked, 9 also knew where to find the key. - My point is that obtaining a firearm is not an onerous task for kids - But, even if a kid can get a hold of a gun… Why would they emulate Kinkel, Harris, Klebold, & others?

57 Everyone hates these shooters, so why would any other kid emulate them?
Many kids can identify with the feelings that led to the shootings. BERLIN: A German teen who stormed his former school with guns and bombs had venerated as "God" one of the gunmen in the 1999 Columbine shooting in the U.S, according to excerpts from his diary published Wednesday… It is terrible how similar Eric (Harris) was to me. I am the further development" of Harris, Bosse said. "I have learned from his mistakes, the bombs.“ On the eve of the attack, he wrote that he hoped that other "outsiders" would "be like me: a Goddamn hero." International Herald Tribune, 11/ 22/06 "You wanna know why there has only been three school shootings in Quebec? It's because the people here don't have the balls to do it, as much as they want to ... as much as they plan it all ... make `hit lists' and just wish they had the guts that Eric and Dylan had ... you know ... the real victims of Columbine! They are looked up to by many bullied high school students ... and many believe that the bullies got what they deserved on April 20th, Kimveer will be greatly missed by the people who actually understood him ... the people who don't have their heads up their asses.“ Excerpt from Toronto Star article found at

58 Notes to accompany previous slide (“Everyone hates”)
- Many ostracized & bullied kids identify with tortured lives of shooters - They know what it is like to be emotionally injured to such an extent that they want to send the same hurt to their tormentors - And send a solid, unquestionable message to all who bully: Cease & Desist! - In a strange twist on this phenomenon: Evan Ramsey (Bethel, Alaska) wanted his classmates to watch him shoot himself so that his death would be forever etched in their memories. ...Payback for incessant anguish & agony they inflicted on him over years. - In his words: “I was picked on 7 hours a day, everyday, & teachers didn’t do anything to help me.” Instead, he shot another student & principal who rushed to intervene. - In his jail cell, shared with a reporter Hundreds of letters from adolescents who found themselves in the same situation as he had been. - They wrote of desperately seeking help from adults & being turned away. - They wrote of how they understood why he would want to do such a thing. We’ll return to the psychological mindset of these youngsters soon. - But returning to the characteristics of school shooters:

59 (As presented in its 2002 summary report) T-F: The U. S
(As presented in its 2002 summary report) T-F: The U.S. Secret Service has developed a fairly accurate profile for identification of likely assailants. Studied 37 attacks Interviewed 10 One characteristic applied to nearly all shooters. It is…? Gender Only one characteristic applies to 100% of school shooters. It is…? Disordered home life (not explained further) Eric Hainstock’s father had child abuse reports filed against him.

60 Notes to accompany previous slide (“Everyone hates”)
- Any other traits? -Enrollment in a school in a semi-rural community is very common. - We often imagine the names of German Death-Rock bandsemblazoned on T-shirts worn under black leather trench coats donned by teens with Goth makeup OR Teen-aged boys outfitted in camouflage fatigues. - However, getting back to the True-False Question: - No accurate or useful profile for identifying potential attackers - Any profiles become large nets that catch many would not even consider engaging in such acts. - Fail to I.D. many who would do so. - Assailants were of: - Many ages - All school behavioral & academic histories at school - Varied personalities & - Every social standing So it’s not personal characteristics that are of primary importance… - Rather, it’s the behavior patterns in which they engage.

61 Behaviors “Rather than trying to determine the ‘type’ of student who may engage in targeted school violence, an inquiry should focus instead on a student’s behaviors and communications to determine if that student appears to be planning or preparing for an attack. Rather than asking whether a particular student ‘looks like’ those who have launched school-based attacks before, it is more productive to ask whether the student is engaging in behaviors that suggest preparations for an attack, if so how fast the student is moving toward attack, and where intervention may be possible.” (USSS/USDOE report, 2002).

62 Speaker Notes - Nearly all attackers demonstrated some actions previous to the shooting that were noticed by others & should have caused great concern.

63 Pertinent Questions for Guiding Our Prevention Efforts
The 2002 report recommended against profiling. It recommended that teachers and parents ask: What patterns of behavior might be of concern? Threats of imminent harm to others The making of plans for attack The gathering of weapons What should someone do if s/he notices such behavior? What should we do if such behavior is reported?

64 Speaker Notes - Certainly, these would be on the list
- Where do I go with my observations? - Systematic procedures. - Find info on each in handouts & (along with other internet sites) - Some guidelines derived from The Report might include:

65 Extending the Recommendations of the USSS/USDOE Report
The importance of reporting is emphasized to students, as they are most likely to be aware. A reporting system is set up, including an anonymous tip line. A system for reacting to reports is developed. Confidentiality of reporters maintained by trusted educators known for being able to keep secrets. Set up a network with students from different social groups who have their “ear to the ground” with regard to what is happening in the school. The success of our efforts depends on educators respecting and valuing all students. (More later on the importance & development of this part).

66 Speaker Notes - Outcome depends on how students view us.
- First though, let’s look at some of the other report suggestions:

67 Also recommended: Develop connections to the police and other first responders as well as mental health departments and community groups. Develop crisis plans that focus on prevention and reaction. Respond promptly and efficiently to bullying, which is a motive behind the attacks. “Many attackers felt bullied, persecuted or injured by others prior to the attack” (USSS/USDOE, 2002) and said that they had sought, without success, educator intervention.

68 Speaker Notes - And the recurring recommendation…
- There’s that pesky bullying thing again. - So much evidence that schools need to address it, but so little done nationwide. - Perhaps instead of profiling students, we ought to profile their schools. - We could identify schools that are at greater risk than others.

69 Does your school fit “the profile”?
While profiles are inaccurate in identifying kids at risk for school assault, might they be more accurate for school environments that are at risk? Some of the characteristics: -Bullying unaddressed (No comprehensive plan or training) -Absence of peer mediation or conflict resolution -Failure to teach tolerance & socially skilled interaction behavior -Feeble attempts at building a sense of community & esprit de corp -Failure to seek out troubled kids & provide them with supports (as per the checklist in your handout) -Staff allowed to be negative with kids & verbally bully them Strategies for addressing each can be found at & elsewhere.

70 Speaker Notes -Oh, how far they’ve fallen from those pre-teaching days when swore they’d NEVER do anything like this to kids. -Problem: Didn’t get good training in positive behavior management & turned to the dark side, Luke. -Many teachers end up doing things would cause them to file a Union grievance if done to them. -These toxic teachers, who seem to pride themselves in their ability to hurt those that they serve when they “Let that kid know who’s boss.” make our schools less safe. When teachers yell at & berate kids, it creates a disconnect between us & those students. It’s not something to be admired & emulated. -It indicates inadequate training, something that we can remedy so that they don’t place the rest of us in harm’s way when angry kid returns with revenge on his mind. - Come to -Dedicated to giving you - free, - step-by-step, - how to do it positive behavior management strategies -My personal mission to help teachers & kids work better together -Has become #1 on the planet -Teachers from 111 different countries That’s the end of our commercial messages. We now return you to our program….

71 T-F: We need more SWAT teams & Metal Detectors.
Hardening the target helps. It is not sufficient.

72 Speaker Notes - Making schools less vulnerable, security-wise, is an important aspect of providing safety to those within school grounds. However, in isolation it is insufficient to fully protect us & our charges. - Metal detectors are of little concern to kid bent on killing self & others. - Secret Service interviewed Pearl, Miss. shooter. Asked him what would have done if encountered metal detector. The response? He said would have “…walked right through it”. - Security guards next to them? Shooter in Red Lake, MN shot security guard as walked by metal detector. And are metal detectors or even security guards with wands feasible in rural/small town areas like Cazenovia with 129 students in high school? - How effective is “threat evaluation” software when most shooters don’t make a threat known to those who use the software? - Quick response Law Enforcement Teams, however promptly they arrive on the scene, are too late at most shooting incidents that typically last only minutes. Certainly, enhanced security measures certainly are needed, but we can’t rely solely upon them. - One rather controversial security suggestion has been forwarded:

73 Gun totin’ teachers: Should we be “packin’ heat”?
Excerpted from the web site of Wisconsin State Legislator Frank Lassee (R - 2nd district: Green Bay): “Last week, in the wake of several school shootings including one in rural Wisconsin, I proposed legislation to give Wisconsin teachers and other school staff, who complete a background check and a rigorous gun safety course, the option to defend themselves and our children with weapons.” “To clarify, this is how I described my proposal to my 10 year old daughter when she asked me over the weekend why so many people with cameras wanted to talk to me. I told her that somewhere in her school there will be a locked box (safe?) with a gun in it. And that if a bad person with a gun came into her school that wanted to hurt her or her classmates a school official who is trained to use it, would go to the box (safe?) and use the gun to protect them from harm. She looked at me, smiled and said, “That makes sense to me daddy,” and went back to playing.”

74 Next year in Wisconsin? Three states already allow teachers to carry handguns in school (with a valid conceal and carry permit): Utah, Oregon & New Hampshire. Representative Lassee’s proposal would require that the guns to be placed in a “locked box/safe in a secure location”. Cartoon by M. Stevens in New Yorker Magazine.

75 T-F: We gotta get tough with the trouble makers. Zero tolerance!
Shooters already had belonging problems at home. Their rejection by students and teachers meant that they were not valued in either of the two most significant settings in their world. That’s an overwhelming hurt. Punishment without caring, support, and the teaching of replacement behaviors, builds resentment. It destroys a feeling of being emotionally connected. It is difficult to like those who hurt us. “Getting tough” in order to “Teach ‘em a lesson”… doesn’t. Teachers and administrators were targeted in more than 1/2 of the incidents.

76 Speaker Notes Which kids? No profile!
- I’m all for standing firm, but I’ve found that typically… - Zero tolerance = Zero thinking. - Most often, it’s a Brain Fart. Yes, I want my child protected & I want those who threaten her safety to face consequences. However,…people resent & dislike those who punish them without also showing concern & caring. -They become immune to any behavior change effects,except for the lingering resentment & feelings of alienation caused by it. Many strike back. I don’t want angry & alienated kids coming back armed to my kids’ school. ALIENATION: A common psychological trait among school shooters I’m not talking now about kids who have been shooters. I’m talking about kids at risk for life failure. - Yes, I want punishment to fit the crime…but with Rehabilitation directed by a wise & respected mentor who continues to support the youngster & work on personal change.

77 Speaker Notes I have a great deal of experience with, & some modicum of knowledge about troubled & troubling kids. I obtained degrees in teaching them. I taught them. I teach others about them. They are my life’s work. I’ve found that as with all kids, I care about these misguided and detached ones too. - They are young humans, however errant at the moment, who need to be given - Knowledge - Skills & - Supportive hand extended to help them climb off society’s human trash heap. - They may be “Bad”, so to speak, at present… but it is due to what society has done to them. - Therefore, it is society’s obligation to - Reclaim them - & Bring them back into the fold …BEFORE they strike out. - I find my preaching to be in good company:

78 Father Flanagan, “Boys Town” Founder (Now “Boys & Girls Town”)
“There are no bad boys. There is only bad environment, bad training, bad example, bad thinking.” “I have yet to find a single boy who wants to be bad.” “A boy or girl given the proper guidance and direction—kept busy and constructively occupied during their leisure or free time—will prove my statement that there is no such thing as a bad boy or girl.” “There is nothing the matter with our growing boys that love, proper training and guidance will not remedy.” “When parents fail to do their job, when they allow their children to run the streets and keep bad company, when they fail to provide them with good examples in the home, then the parents and not the children are delinquent.” “Rehabilitation needs greater emphasis, punishment less.” “I do not believe that a child can be reformed by lock and key and bars, or that fear can ever develop a child’s character.” “No race that does not take care of its young can hope to survive — or deserves to survive.”

79 Speaker Notes -Whenever I hear the news of another life that met an untimely end from being shot by a gun-wielding student, my heart rises into my throat before sinking. But I also see victims at another level: Those created by society before being rejected by it. YES…I hate what those armed youngsters did. I hate who they were at that moment in time. I hate what they became when they planned the act. - However, I also mourn for the loss of the good kids that they could have…should have become. - I want our society to take the responsibility of helping ALL of its children. I want our kids & our future to be given priority status. I don’t want schools to have to say: “We can’t do that because we don’t have the staff & the funding.” Other professions that require our level of education & training get the dollars & support to do their jobs… most not nearly as important as the one we’ve undertaken. Let’s get back to school security issues. - Right now, monies are being made available to some extent, primarily for security measures, one very important part of guarding our kids.

80 Tighten School Security.

81 Speaker Notes Our conundrum: It’s difficult to find the balance point between security & friendliness. - Excessive physical security can harm emotional security. - In the words of William Modzeleski, Director of the Safe & Drug-Free Schools Program for the USDOE: “Metal detectors do keep out some type of guns, but I think it’s a balancing act. Some schools with a weapons problem can benefit from them. But they can send a wrong message and have an adverse effect on the climate of the school. It also sends a message that if you have a metal detector, you’re safe. And I’m not sure that’s so. It can also result in greater feelings of alienation from one’s schools on the part of all students.” There’s that Alienation-Belonging thing again. Once the lookouts are atop the masts, & the hulls are armored, it’s time to address the psychological safety of those inside our educational vessel. - Psychologists tell us that our greatest human need is to belong. ~ ~ ~ ~

82 Speaker Notes - Remember how important it was to "fit in" when you were a teenager? - To which group(s) did you belong (or wish to belong)? - Jocks - Band - Actors - Academic high achievers - Freaks - Outsiders? - Did you associate mostly with kids from your own racial or cultural group? - Remember how ridicule & rejection by others hurt so much? - We were brutally reminded that we did not “Belong”. - Rudolph Dreikur’s, among others, wrote on this greatest of human needs & developed a model to explain how lack of it affects our actions. - Oddly, it faded in popularity after the 80’s… just like Disco, although ~ ~ ~(joke)

83 Rudolf Dreikurs’ Model
If we don’t feel accepted and valued in an important life setting, we react negatively… progressively so, if issues remain unresolved. When kids don’t feel valued by teachers and peers at school, they engage in “Mistaken Goals” (misguided reactions to feeling disconnected) Seeking ATTENTION (If not getting enough to feel accepted and valued) Seeking POWER (Resentment results in the mandating of attention) Seeking REVENGE (Anger from losing the struggle spurs vengeance) Displaying INADEQUACY (Total lack of effort and cooperation while in the abusive or non-accepting setting). Show this slide, mentioning that Rudolf Driekurs developed a system to identify the reasons for misbehavior back in the 1970’s. It applies moreso to elementary aged kids, but still too to adolescents to a large degree. It applies to the reasons for behavior related to the need to belong (versus other reasons). Mention that some kids have learned other ‘right ways’ to respond in situations, and may need to learn to become ‘cultural chameleons’, able to show the correct behavior in the correct setting, being successful in both school and home situations.

84 Speaker Notes - You’ll find more elaboration on
- This progressively disabling sequence happens anyplace where kids feel devalued & rejected. - The Revenge part applies to the: -Fighters -Vandals -Graffitti scrawlers -Those who damage teachers’ cars ….& School Shooters - In school and peer-related situations, Belonging for adolescents involves 3 things:

85 Three “Belonging” concerns for adolescents
Being invisible. Receiving Criticism Especially public humiliation. Being excluded.

86 Speaker Notes - Un-noticed, unimportant for consideration.
- Being shamed for one’s mistakes or inadequacies. Being rejected or shunned. The study conducted by Secret Service & USDOE found that 2/3 of school shooters felt persecuted by others. They sought revenge against those who feel small. - So many youngsters have been denied entry to a safe port… Left to flounder & struggle in stormy emotional seas. But most schools either: - Don’t see the need to do something - Or, Don’t believe in it. Don’t believe in it?! That’s like falling off a cliff & trying not to believe in gravity! I hear the often spoken false-front statements, like…

87 “We gave those kids lots of chances and did everything we could to help them. Some kids just can’t be reached.” High quality, cutting edge schools create positive school climates that promote: Respect for all members of the school community. A safe & welcoming climate for all. The teaching of what each student needs to know (in all realms…including behavior).

88 Speaker Notes - Now I’ll accept those statements IF I see evidence of socio-emotional & behavioral curricula taught by teachers skilled in instruction & relating with kids. - Typically, it’s a cover for saying, we don’t have the: -staff -money -or the desire to help these kids. Somehow, other schools make strong inroads. -These institutions of learning maintain a focus on - creating a sense of community - & interpersonal connection throughout the facility. - Here’s the Cliff’s notes for how to do it…

89 National Consortium of School Violence Prevention Researchers and Practitioners (2006)
Support programs should operate at 3 levels:

90 Speaker Notes Universal reaches 80-90% of kids
More focused instruction for 5-10% Laser-precise direct interventions for 1-5% - Popular model nowadays, similar to: - Primary, Secondary, Tertiary of USOE & PBIS - All, Some, None, The model of Sopris West behavior trainers (Of which I am one) - How might this play out, operationally speaking?...

91 How do we reclaim errant youth & prevent disaster
How do we reclaim errant youth & prevent disaster? What can educators do? Treat students with concern & respect (Universal) Anti-bullying policies and education (Universal) Peer mediation/Conflict resolution procedures (Universal). Character education (Targeted & Intensive) Cognitive behavioral strategies (Targeted & Intensive) Social skills training (Targeted & Intensive) Anger management training (Targeted & Intensive) Problem solving (Targeted and Intensive) Interpersonal connection activities (Targeted & Intensive) Provision of mentors - adults & older kids (Targeted & Intensive). Counseling (Intensive) Psychological evaluation & treatment (Intensive) Interagency cooperation (Intensive).

92 Speaker Notes - We’re educators. Educate!
- Last 5 or 6 in my book for kids - We want all kids to have positive connections to all their teachers, & be invested in the welfare of others. The National Consortium wrote in it’s Fall 2006 School Shootings Position Statement: “Students need to feel that they belong at their school and the school staff and the school community as a whole care for them….Research indicates that those students most at risk for delinquency and violence are those who are most alienated from the school community. Schools need to reach out to build positive connections to marginalized students, showing concern for them, and fostering avenues of meaningful involvement.” -Unaddressed bullying & ignored inter-group conflict creates resentment toward the people who do not protect them… US! Each mean-natured, ill-tempered, & rejecting teacher who “Doesn’t put up with any crap from that kid” places the rest of us at risk. - What then is an educator to do within one’s own room? - That’s our focus for the follow-up session at 11. - Slightly different than the catalog description that “Promised you the world” -Instead I’m giving you… New Jersey. - Hey New Jersey is nice! …Parts of it.

93 Speaker Notes - What I mean to say is:
- Given the material in your handout - & that focus on school-wide efforts, - In the followup session, I’d like to address what we teachers can do in our classrooms to maintain an efficiently running classroom while creating - a positive -& accepting interpersonal climate. - Kids need to feel connected to us & comfortable bringing safety concerns to us. Comprehensive analyses by: - Researchers - Secret Service - & FBI conclude that our best protection lies in: - Improving communication & trust with students & others in the community so that threats & recent threatening patterns of behavior are reported so that they can be investigated & addressed: - Legally - Educationally - Psychologically. - The tips that I pick up as the subtext in these reports & other research literature is: - Be alert. - Be informed. - Be caring. - Be all that you, a great teacher, can be. -Seek & attain the ideal.

94 Principles for Prudent Practice (To be addressed in the follow-up session)
Build interpersonal bonds with students. Correct student actions in ways that don’t come across as being ostracized. Build a sense of esprit de corps in your classroom and the school at-large. Guarantee everyone safety from bullying. Physical Oral Psychological Intellectual Non-physical, Non-oral Shunning Cyber.

95 What can I do to decrease my chances of  being a school shooting victim?  
The motive for these attacks is REVENGE.  Shooters are striking back at those who have made their lives miserable.  Don't be one of those people.  Treat all students with respect.  Listen to all kids.  Talk TO them, not AT personal. Be patient and tolerant.  Be sure they get more positive comments in your classroom than negative ones (at least a 3 to 1 ratio).  Give them the time of day.  Greet them at the door with a welcoming comment.  Use "we" and "us" messages, and respectful communication (see the home page link at titled "Nice ways to build self discipline in kids"). Help them to succeed and catch them being good. Promote a positive supportive peer culture within your classroom (see the home page links at titled "Promoting positive peer pressure" and "Ways to catch em being good"). When you must punish them, make them aware that it was done because you care about them or because you know what they are capable of doing if they apply themselves.  When a youngster says "Why did you punish me/call my parents?", the answer should be "Because I care about you and want to see you succeed here at school…and in life.“ NEVER be mean or condescending.  Control your temper.

96 Speaker Notes -Society created the shooters it now disclaims.
-Society must work to change the conditions that hurt & excluded these children to such an extent that they strike out at us in revenge. -Our assigned mission is to protect all of our kids while helping alienated & antisocial youngsters turn back toward a prosocial outlook & lifestyle. -The memories of those who have died must lead us to: -Develop safer & more welcoming school environments & -Implement methods for reaching those who don't presently fit into the societal puzzle.

97 Speaker Notes -When it comes to safe & welcoming educational environments, we can’t afford to take the advice of Ed Norton, the sidekick to Jackie Gleason’s Ralph Cramden, in the old Honeymooner episodes from 1960s… “When the tides of life turn against you, & the waves upset your boat; Don’t think of the things that might have been. Just lay on your back & float.” In cases such as these we must: -Get a better boat -Train the crew well for rough weather & -Make the passengers feel comfortable & valued.

98 Speaker Notes - I’m not talking about the Love Boat…
just the Like Boat. - Not kisses & hugs… just smiles & pats on the back. Not hand-holding… just hand-shaking. I’m going to use my hand now to wave a fond farewell as you set sail for informative & entertaining educational ports today. Then I wave it the other way (arm over & then underhand sweep to my spot) to beckon our conference captains back to the helm. Thank you so much.

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