Governor Pat Quinn held a summit on school safety Tuesday in Springfield. The gathering was spurred by last month’s shooting at an elementary school in Connecticut. Brian Mackey has more.
The meeting brought together police, school administrators, teachers’ unions, and mental health organizations.
Dr. LaMar Hasbrouck is director of the Illinois Department of Public Health. He says tragedies like the shooting in Newtown, Conn., help illuminate a broader problem.
HASBROUCK: “Even if you look at all the mass murders at school campuses over the last 10-20 years, it’s just the tip of the iceberg in terms of all the violence that’s happening day-to-day in schools.”
Hasbrouck says people who carry out major acts of violence at school might themselves have been victims of smaller acts, like bullying.
Officials did not come out of the meeting with a big plan to pass a bunch of laws or immediately fortify schools. Gov. Quinn says the diversity of Illinois school districts — from urban to rural — means that kind of decision should be left to local school boards.
Quinn says he still favors a ban on the sale of assault weapons, and wants the General Assembly to make it a priority.
— Brian Mackey