At a Senate hearing today, speakers from law enforcement to the secretary of education all agreed: school districts need a security plan that's practiced over and over again.
"There are a hundred horror stories I can share with you about events that were made worse because the people that responded had never trained before, and never worked together before," said Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency Director Glenn Cannon.
There is no one-size-fits-all solution. Different districts have different immediate security concerns.
"We need to be able to provide the flexibility at the local level for school districts to be able to address the needs that they believe are important to meet their community needs," said Secretary of Education Ronald Tomalis.
Pennsylvania State Police Commissioner Frank Noonan recalled the tragic Amish school shooting in Lancaster County.
"Amish school shooting was a watershed event for the Pennsylvania State Police. We've been making strides towards school safety since then. We are doing active shooter training with all of our troopers, so all of our troopers, and that's the key change we have made since 2006. Is that the first trooper on the scene has to be able to take action?" asked Noonan.
Susquehanna Township's high school has a school resource officer to watch over the up to 1,200 people that fill the building. "Between our staff, our students, cafeteria workers, that's probably larger than some small boroughs in this commonwealth. Should not that building be properly policed?" asked Chief Rob Martin of Susquehanna Township Police Department.
There's was concern about arming administrators or staff.
Officer and SWAT team member John Burner out of Washington, Pennsylvania has studied the idea. He suggests instead of arming administrators and staff, have a trained uniformed police officer in every building.
Tuesday, May 21 2013 9:46 AM EDT2013-05-21 13:46:23 GMT
MOORE, Okla. (AP) - The state medical examiner's office has revised the death toll from a tornado in an Oklahoma City suburb to 24 people, including seven children. Spokeswoman Amy Elliot said TuesdayMore >>
The state medical examiner's office has revised the death toll from a tornado in an Oklahoma City suburb to 24 people, including seven children.More >>
Tuesday, May 21 2013 11:15 AM EDT2013-05-21 15:15:19 GMT
The Carlisle Sentinel has put together voter guides for major primary elections in Cuberland County. Carlisle Borough CouncilCarlisle Area School BoardCarlisle Borough Tax CollectorCarlisle MayorWest PennsboroMore >>
Polling places across Pennsylvania opened at 7 a.m. today and will remain open until 8 p.m. as voter cast their ballots in a primary election for municipal and statewide offices. More >>
Tuesday, May 21 2013 9:03 AM EDT2013-05-21 13:03:04 GMT
A 30-year-old man was shot several times in York city late Monday night, according to police. York City Police said Eric Richards, 30, was shot in the abdomen and chest around 11:30 p.m. on the first blockMore >>
A 30-year-old man was shot several times in York city late Monday night, according to police. More >>
Hearing on the radio that a violent storm was approaching her rural Oklahoma neighborhood, Lindsay Carter took advantage of the advanced warning, gathered her belongings and fled. When she returned, there was little...More >>
A monstrous tornado at least a half-mile wide roared through the Oklahoma City suburbs Monday, flattening entire neighborhoods and destroying an elementary school with a direct blow as children and teachers huddled against...More >>
Tuesday, May 21 2013 9:58 AM EDT2013-05-21 13:58:03 GMT
Perhaps the most watched race in Tuesday's election is the Democratic primary for Harrisburg mayor. Incumbent Linda Thompson is trying to fight off strong challenges from Dan Miller and Eric Papenfuse.More >>
Perhaps the most watched race in Tuesday's election is the Democratic primary for Harrisburg mayor. Incumbent Linda Thompson is trying to fight off strong challenges from Dan Miller and Eric Papenfuse. Lewis Butts is also on the ballot.More >>
Monday, May 20 2013 10:55 PM EDT2013-05-21 02:55:53 GMT
Ron Castille is the chief justice of Pennsylvania's Supreme Court. He will face voters in November in a retention election, which are typically a slam-dunk for judges.More >>
Ron Castille is the chief justice of Pennsylvania's Supreme Court. He will face voters in November in a retention election, which are typically a slam-dunk for judges. Voters will simply vote 'yes' or 'no' on whether to retain Castille for another 10-year term.More >>