By SRO Kjell Michelsen
A couple of weeks ago I had an extraordinary evening at the high school. For a few weeks, our excellent drama class had worked on an original play created by themselves about an important issue that for many would be hard to tackle let alone perform on a high school stage. The name of the play was, “More Than a Number,” featuring monologues and short scenes honoring victims and survivors of school shootings from the last twenty years.
Last year during the annual Tennessee SRO conference in Pigeon Forge I met Kristina Anderson, who was shot four times and was the only survivor in her classroom during the Virginia Tech massacre a few years ago. We have kept in touch, and I told her about this play, and she was interested to know more about it. One day I hope to have her at our school to talk about her incredible story of survival, hope, and forgiveness.
Preventing school violence in any form is something that’s on my mind every single day and is, when it comes down to it, my only purpose as an SRO. All the other things I do are useful add-ons to benefit the total picture of school safety, ranging from preventing or stopping a violent act, traffic safety, counseling, working with our SADD club, and other school-related activities.
I feel incredibly fortunate to work with students, teachers, and administrators who truly have a passion for the security and well-being of our school. As I have written before, school safety is a team effort, and I am one part of a chain of individuals who work together to make our school a safe place to be.
Until next time, be safe, be kind and be happy.