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Schools Getting Back To Business

SCRANTON — The early morning scene at McNichols Plaza Elementary in south Scranton looked like any other morning. But for teachers, students, and parents alike, it felt different in the aftermath of the mass shooting at a school in Connecticut.

“Well it is a little nerve-racking thinking about what happened to all them little kids and the adults,” said Willard Corker, of Scranton.

The shooting, of course, was on the minds of parents in Scranton and school administrators. To start the week, school leaders placed an undercover police officer at each of the city’s elementary schools.

Scranton school district administrators and police met first thing in the morning to review security policies that are already in place.

Superintendent Bill King said it’s just too soon to tell if any of those policies will change.

“The bottom line is we don’t know what exactly happened at Sandy Hook. (There) may be some lessons learned,” said King.

A poll of districts across Lackawanna County found that most administrators had similar meetings following Friday’s events in Connecticut. That included leaders at the Mid Valley school district in Throop.

“I think when we think about protocols and where we may have the violence occur, you don’t think about it at such a young level, you think of it as more of a high school issue or middle school issue. This brought it down to reality in that it could happen anywhere at any level,” said Superintendent Randy Parry, of Mid Valley school district.

Parry said because of that unfortunate reality, the school resource officer, who spent time at the high school and middle school, will add the elementary school to his rounds.

Parry said other changes may come. But, for now it’s most important for students to get back in a routine.

“Is there any way to prevent it 100 percent? Probably not. But, to be able to do whatever we can to be preventative, that’s everybody’s goal. I don’t think we want to teach our kids to live scared,” said Parry.

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