Many school children and parents alike will need to be comforted after the horrific events at a Connecticut elementary school last week. Many will want assurances what happened there cannot occur here.
Sadly, we know the answer to that. The evil that spurs a human being to do what was done to innocent children and others Friday is both vicious and devilishly cunning. There is no guarantee it can be prevented in Minot or anywhere else, no matter how many rules and procedures are in place.
No doubt educators throughout our area, like their peers elsewhere, are wondering if there is more that can be done to safeguard children and staff while in school. We know much already is being done to keep evil-doers out of our schools and to cope with them if they manage to get in, and every act of school violence is cause for school districts to take time to revisit plans and procedures.
Already, we've read of actions taken by staff at the Newtown, Conn., school that, beyond any doubt, saved the lives of countless children, and stories of heroism by students are emerging, too.
Many teachers and other school staff members in the Minot area have been trained in what to do in such horrific situations. All could benefit from regular re-training to keep their skills sharp. Children, too, should be educated in how to react to violence, whether it be a bully in the halls or a gunman. Parents are the best judges of how to handle that, working in conjunction with school rules.
The possibility such skills will have to be used is extremely remote. Our children and their teachers are more likely to be struck by lightning than to be caught in a murderous assault in their schools. But if it does occur, being ready may save lives.
School officials across the country surely will be reviewing whether their security plans are realistic, and if not, what needs to be done to make them so.