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Reactions To Connecticut Tragedy

Administrators, parents discuss what should be done to protect students in the wake of the most recent school shooting

After the school shooting in Newtown, CT last Friday that left 20 children and six adults dead, millions are talking about what can be done to prevent these horrific mass murders from reoccurring. In addition to sending their thoughts and prayers to the victims and their families, people all over the country are talking about new methods of gun control, how to reign in glamorized media violence without impinging upon artistic expression, how best to improve mental health care, and many other topics believed to have a strong influence over the frequency of public mass-shootings in the U.S. Locally, parents, lawmakers and school officials are beginning to offer some possible answers.

“We cannot begin to assign a psychiatrist to every American, but we can take meaningful steps to lessen the effect of what has become an American culture of violence and obsession with guns,” said Assemblyman Charles Lavine. “I have long fought for rational measures of gun control and to keep high-capacity magazines and weapons out of the hands of those who should never be allowed to use them. I will continue to do so.”

“The Second Amendment must be revised…if a registered household in a given school district is in possession of such guns, the family members should undergo psychological testing to deem them fit to store them in the neighborhood. We must stop this school massacres and we must stop them now,” said Jenny Bencardino, MD, a Jericho parent.

Both the Syosset and Jericho school districts assured parents that children’s safety is a top priority, and expressed confidence in existing safety measures.

“In the past, the district has consulted with an FBI expert on the best security practices in a school setting and have applied the suggestions in our schools. The safety of our students is a top priority in Syosset and we will continue to evaluate our security measures and procedures to ensure the utmost protection and to promote a safe learning and working environment,” stated Syosset CSD in a statement posted to the district website.

“Jericho is confident in the strong safety measures that we have in place,” said Jericho Superintendent of Schools Hank Grishman. “We are taking this opportunity to review those procedures and have a meeting of our district safety committee this week.”