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Saturday, March 23, 2019

Another tragedy befalls Stoneman Douglass as Florida republicans push guns on teachers

Tragically a young woman who survived the 2018 Valentine's day massacre, suffering from post traumatic stress killed herself earlier this week. 

From the USA Today 

A recent graduate of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School who survived the Parkland school shooting has died by suicide, the student's mother told CBS Miami.

Sydney Aiello was 19 when she died Sunday, according to a GoFundMe page set up in her honor

"She lit up every room she entered. She filled her days cheerleading, doing yoga, and brightening up the days of others. Sydney aspired to work in the medical field helping others in need," the campaign says.

Aiello was friends with Meadow Pollack, one of the 17 people killed at the Parkland shooting on Feb. 14, 2018, CBS Miami reports. Cara Aiello — Sydney's mother — told the station that her daughter was at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School that day, but was not in the building where the massacre occurred.

Sydney Aiello had been recently diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder and struggled with a fear of classroom settings, hindering her ability to attend college classes, Cara Aiello told the station.

The Republican legislators in Tallahassee apparently learning very little from the events at Stoneman Douglass are renewing their efforts to have teachers carry guns.

From the Miami Herald,

In introducing her 36-page school safety bill Thursday, Florida House Education Committee chairwoman Rep. Jennifer Sullivan wanted to be clear: “This bill does not require a teacher to be armed.”
It would, however, allow school districts to let teachers voluntarily participate in Florida’s armed guardian program if they pass a rigorous background check and complete required training. And it passed the committee along party lines, after nearly two hours of comments and debate.
They say because teachers won't be "required" to carry guns it's okay, well friends its not and for a variety of reasons. There is no evidence that says having more guns in barely trained hands will keep people safer while there is plenty of evidence that says the opposite. This is a build the wall solution that might satiate republican's fever dreams but doesn't address the problem. We need more social workers and mental health counselors in our schools, not guns and bullets. It's not almost like they don't want to address the real problem, no friends it is exactly like.

In the rush to put police or armed guards in schools we are sacrificing positions that will actually make a difference and keep people safe. 

From the Hechinger report, 

LOS ANGELES — Teachers are demanding more counselorsand mental health support to better meet the needs of students, with Oakland’s educators becoming the latest to join in the red wave of those striking for better conditions. 

Here in California, many counselors are responsible for supporting more than 1,000 students each, and this is quadruple the ratio recommended by the American School Counselors Association. In Los Angeles, teachers launched a historic strike in January, in part because 80 percent of elementary schools do not have a full-time nurse. 

Why don’t schools hire more counselors? A report out today from my organization, the ACLU, shows that schools are indeed hiring: police officers. Instead of spending their money on a long-proven solution, counseling, they are putting their resources into enforcement and discipline, even though there’s little evidence that these measures keep students safe, much less improve their emotional well-being. When educators fail to address students’ record levels of depression, anxiety and trauma, schools become a conduit into the justice system, and then into prisons, instead of to a better life.
Let me ask you this question. If the legislature thinks it is so important that there be armed personnel in school, why is it to much to ask that they fund professional police to carry them? Aren't our children worth it? Tallahassee obviously doesn't think so.


  1. My kids go to an elementary school with a uniformed police officer. The school I work at has an armed security guard. One school is in an affluent neighborhood with a very active PTA & tons of helicopter moms. The other is in an economically depressed area of town with very limited parental involvement. You can guess which is which.

  2. If one elementary school has a rentacop & another on the nice side of town has JSO who pays the difference. The district or the school?