Daily Video

February 14, 2019

How students feel about new school security measures since Parkland



Directions: Read the summary, watch the video and answer the discussion questions. You may want to read along using the transcript here or turn on “CC” closed-captions.


Note: If you are a teacher, parent or concerned adult, use this PBS link to see a full list of resources on how to speak with children about gun violence. Resources are from a variety of organizations and for students of all ages. Use the resources that work best for you. The National Association of School Psychologists also offers helpful guidelines in its tips for talking with children about violence, which are available in multiple languages.


Summary: A year after a gunman killed 17 individuals at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, the lives and outlooks of students across the country were also permanently altered. The NewsHour’s Student Reporting Labs (SRL) spoke to several of them about the tragedy’s impact on their daily experiences, how safe they feel and the role of politics. SRL student voices were also included in this NewsHour article, A year after Parkland, support sinks for stricter laws on gun sales, poll says. The poll shows that the percent of Americans who want stricter gun reform laws fell from 71 percent to 51 percent over the last year since Parkland.



Discussion questions: 


1) Essential question: How important is it to hear directly from students about their thoughts on school safety?


2) Do you think students from Parkland, Florida, have influenced gun reform? Explain. If you would like, as a class, respond to this NewsHour tweet asking the same question.


3) What student voices resonated with you? Why? Are there student voices you wished you had heard from more?


4) A study in the Journal of Adolescent Health found that certain security measures have made students feel less safe in school. Why do you think that was the case? Read this Reuters article to learn more. Did security measures in your school change after Parkland. How so? Do you feel more safe in your school as a result?


5) The shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, was tragic and upsetting. Anniversary dates can also be very upsetting. Who can you talk with at your school and at home, if you are feeling upset by incidents of gun violence?


6) Media literacy: At the end of the NewsHour’s broadcast segments, a slide of informational is always included. How do pollsters know that the March For Our Lives protests played a role in voter turnout for those aged 18-29-year? What is the source of the informational text? If you’re not sure, how could you find out? (further reading, check out Where do young Americans stand on guns?)



Extension activities:


1. To learn more about how students would like to solve gun violence in America, read these two pieces, How teens want to solve America’s school shooting problem, and a shorter version here, featuring NewsHour Extra’s Student Voice writers and Student Reporting Labs.


2. To learn more about the Student Reporting Labs program, visit their new website at https://studentreportinglabs.org/ and watch the video below. 



Extra, extra read all about! You may have heard the term “Student Voice” in school or over social media. What does “Student Voice” mean to you? If you think you have a good idea for an opinion piece, consider sending a pitch to NewsHour Extra’s Student Voice blog. The blog is full of powerful, original pieces by students. Write Victoria Pasquantonio at vpasquantonio@newshour.org. We’d love to hear from you!


Sign up for short education highlights twice a month from PBS NewsHour here.


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