Mom of Sandy Hook victim speaks on school safety during Frederick meeting

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The Maryland Center for School Safety and a mother of a child killed in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting are hosting several school safety training meetings throughout the state of Maryland.

Every second matters to law enforcement officials, especially when children are involved.

The Maryland Center for School Safety and Safe and Sound Schools are going across the state of Maryland to help local law enforcement, mental health professionals, and educators improve school safety.

“The lessons learned and how we recover from this horrific school community crisis to be able to prepare for school emergency in all of all our schools’ in the state of Maryland,” said the Executive Director of the Maryland Center for School Safety, Edward Clarke.

But for Michele Gay, it’s personal. She lost her daughter Josephine, who was among 20 children and six educators killed in the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, but she is using the tragedy in hopes of making a difference.

“For very obvious reasons that was one of the more difficult experiences of our lives, but it turned out to be something that we have determined to put to use to put to purpose,” said Gay, who is also the founder and Executive Director of Safe and Sound Schools.

During the eight hour presentation, officials said that one tool that can help save lives is the power of social media.

“Not only do we say, if you see something say something, but do something, come forward to a trusted adult if you think there is a safety concern in your school or within your community,” said Clarke.

While coming up with an escape plan and informing students on what they should do, officials say that the first to respond during a school shooting is the classroom teacher.

“One engagement, one workshop, always leads us to another and so what we learned is that there is a really strong need for this type of training. This type of education and these types of conversations around schools safety,” said Gay.

Connecticut Trooper Dan Jewiss also spoke during the presentation’s about the law enforcement perspective from the elementary school shooting. 

The next scheduled safety meeting will be held on Thursday in Annapolis, Md.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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