Shooting Occurred Despite Santana's Prevention Efforts
Following the recent school shooting at Santana High School in Santee,
Calif., national school-safety experts are wondering what more could have be
done to foster a safe and secure environment for learning, the San Jose
Mercury News reported March 6.
California is considered a leader in violence-prevention efforts, but despite
the $1.1 million in safe-school funding the Grossmont school district
received last year, the measures weren't enough to stop a school shooting.
Santana High School had well-trained safety officers, provided
conflict-resolution courses, encouraged students to inform administrators of
potential threats, and employed additional counselors to help detect and
defuse students' emotional trauma before it could erupt into violence.
"We were prepared to respond. We had things in place for good communication.
Yet we don't know why this happened," said Karen Degiescher, Santana's
principal. "This is an administrator's worst nightmare."
Prior to the shooting, Santana High School had just implemented a new
conflict-resolution program called the Peace Council. The program teaches
students how to resolve on-campus conflicts through talking to one another.
"It's ironic," said Marge Cole, who oversees school-safety programs for the
district. "This school is probably one of the district's best in promoting