School officials had best get ready: the lesson of the Connecticut mass shootings in a grade school is about to come home to hundreds of such institutions across the United States. A random sampling of school parents in my area of suburban Washington shows no concept of what it takes for a stranger to enter a school.
One says there is a buzzer system. "You ring the buzzer and somebody answers and lets you in."
Another says, "You first must go to the principal's office just inside the front entrance." I didn't explain that the Connecticut killer's first victim was the principal, in his office.
True, in some areas the local police have had drills to see how they would handle armed invasions of the local schools. But these do not foresee preventing such entries, only dealing with on-going crimes.
What local parents should do, at risk of being busy-bodies, is inquire of the security system designed to prevent incursions such as the Connecticut instance. Chances are the system is not in place. Schools are thought of as public places, after all.
But the lesson of the Connecticut massacre will not go away. A lesson that all might consider learning.