Sadly, Geauga County residents know first hand the horror that the residents of Oxford Township in Michigan are facing in the wake of the Nov. 30, 2021 school shooting that left four students dead and another seven injured.
As the investigation continues to unfold, the gunman’s parents have also been charged in connection with the murders and now attention has turned to school administrators, who some claim should be liable for not taking additional steps to thwart the gunman’s efforts.
First, we fully understand the unbelievable amount of pressure that our teachers are under in today’s world. Faced with the nearly-impossible task of educating today’s youth amidst an avalanche of outside influence, teachers are no longer “simply” responsible for educating our children. They must also navigate the minefields of over-reaching parents, meddling school boards, zealous and often out-of-touch politicians, and an overwhelming cloud of mistrust circulated by a world of social media that is out of control. And they have to do all of it while continuing to teach Little Bobby and Little Suzie how to conjugate verbs and do long division.
Could those school administrators in Oxford Township have done more to prevent the senseless murders? Perhaps.
Had they done more, would it have eliminated the possibility of retribution in some other way? Perhaps not.
With every answer comes another question and with every question, comes an answer which may or may not tell the entire story.
What we know for sure is that the men and women who have chosen to be professional educators have taken on a monumental task and we’re grateful for their dedication and commitment to our students.
We also understand that teachers and school administrators across this great land have most assuredly prevented countless similar crimes from taking place. Understandably, those selfless acts go unrecognized and unreported.
Of course, we understand that a crime of this magnitude deserves to be fully investigated and we fully support a complete and in-depth analysis of the events leading up to the shooting. But no good is ever accomplished when armchair quarterbacks begin unfairly hurling questions and accusations.
Let the investigators do their work and only then we can begin the discussion of what steps might be taken in the future to diminish the chances of a tragedy like this from happening again.