NJ Schools Work To Avoid Ohio-Like Shooting Tragedy [AUDIO]
The death toll in the Ohio High School shooting rampage is now 3, with two more students still hospitalized.
Many parents in the Garden state are worried a similar kind of violent outburst could happen here.
Mike Yaple, a spokesman for the New Jersey School Boards association says we've seen a lot of changes being made in Jersey schools over the past several years -it after the Columbine shooting massacre in Colorado - and as a result "school resource officers are now quite common, in every school you have extensive character education programs, schools throughout New Jersey have crisis plans, they perform multiple drills - not just fire drills, drills for active shooter, evacuation, bomb threats and lock downs, and there are programs presented on things like conflict resolution, anti-bullying, peer mediation and even dating violence programs."
He says there's a lot of training of teachers, and an effort "to reach out to students - to ideally prevent incidents before they occur - but also education for the student-so if they see something occurring - see something brewing- that they can report it to a trusted teacher, a counselor or someone in the school district…we've seen a number of potentially dangerous incidents being cut off at the pass before they occur because students will report this to a teacher or to the Principal."
Dr. Ron Coughlin, the President of the New Jersey Violence Prevention Institute, says he's concerned there could be copy-cats incidents - at other high schools in the coming weeks - because "it can happen anywhere, particularly when there is not attention paid to this - when people think it can't happen."
He says we're moving in the right direction in Jersey, but "we do need to increase anger management training in all our schools -kindergarten to 12th grade- that's really going to put the cap on it…it's important because anger is at the core of all these actions - it's all about anger- anger makes you attack or avoid…there's no such thing as healthy anger - it's all about healing the pain underneath…you can eliminate anger, you can teach a person to be compassionate."