When one makes the decision to become a teacher, they take on a lot more than just writing problems on the board and making sure all the students have handed in their homework, or have studied for the tests and quizzes. Being a teacher brings on the responsibility of keeping safe the children of other people; their lives, the centers of their world become under your control, your new number one priority. You become the guardian of 20 or more children, and their safety is your biggest responsibility.
Bad things do not just happen outside in the most run down of areas or in the scariest of places. Bad things happen everywhere, even in the places that are supposed to feel like the safest of all.
It was a Friday morning when the Sandy Hook Elementary school underwent a shooting, leaving children as well as teachers dead, injured and fearing the world that they once thought was secure. The documentary that depicts this event is not only a tear jerker, but it is life-changing and, even more so, eye-opening. All of those parents sent their children to school on the bus with their lunches packed and a kiss goodbye before they departed, just like any other day prior to that terrible morning. However, only some of those children returned home to their parents that evening, the others were killed by one man who had the access to the gun that was kept by his mother in their home.
One terrible decision left handfuls of innocent children as well as adults dead.
They did nothing wrong, nor did their parents, they treated that Friday like any other Friday, but it ended very different than what was expected, their kids did not come home.
Imagine having a classroom full of students and being aware that there is an active shooter in the area, and you must protect not only yourself let alone calm your own self down, but protect and comfort the lives of dozens of other innocent children, who know nothing more than happiness, protection and nurture from the world and the ones surrounding it. I personally do not know if I could get myself together and keep all of those children under control at the same time in the situation, but I do not know if it would matter if I could or not, I would not have a choice.
Those children are my priority and I would need to keep them as safe as I could, and protect them from whatever dangers the world brings upon us all. This documentary depicted videos of some of the children that had passed away during this massacre, and that was the hardest part to watch. Seeing how happy those children were, doing things that we all yearn to do again. They had the brightest of smiles and they did not deserve what happened to them. Not one bit. I had to keep telling myself, just as the parent’s of the lost ones had suggested, that it was no one’s fault what happened that day.
The teachers, the parents, the administration, the police and all involved that day, they did nothing wrong. They did everything right. It just was not enough. It was out of anyone’s control what had happened in that school, and the blame is to be put on that man who decided going into a school full of children and shooting was appropriate. He is the reason that those who died were taken that day. But I also learned that we can not focus on who did it and why he did it. We can not give the killer the attention in the slightest bit.
We can not dwell on the past, we must protect and make sure we are prepared for this to happen again, and this time prepared to the extent that no lives will be lost. It is sad even having to prepare or think about this happening again, but as shown by what happened that day, you never know what will happen tomorrow, so we must always be prepared for the future.
As a future teacher, I realized that every moment I get with my students is precious, because we are unsure of the next moment that will allow for the same opportunities. It is important for teachers to protect their students to the best of their abilities, but most importantly to teach their students how to protect themselves as well. We must go beyond the textbooks and worksheets and teach these students worldly skills and prepare them for the “real world” and all of the cruelties it encompasses, without forgetting about all of the good things it provides us as well. What happened at Sandy Hook Elementary School will never be forgotten, and we must keep talking about that day and spreading the word to insure that we are all are prepared for the future, and that things like this do not occur again, certifying the safety of all the future students, not only physically but mentally for them.