School shootings have been a heartbreaking part of our culture for almost 20 years, since the tragedy at Columbine. In recent years there have been so many shootings at elementary, middle and high schools that lockdown drills are becoming almost commonplace for today’s students. However, the reality of sending a child off to school and never seeing them again can never be, and never should be, something we consider to be normal.
It was during a lockdown drill in 2015 that an elementary school teacher in Waukesha County, Wisconsin experienced the terrifying adrenaline rush and difficulty of getting her two classroom doors locked within the few seconds allocated during the drill. The doors had two different keys, each of which had to be located and then inserted with shaking hands in their locks. Even worse, she thought, what if she was out of the room when the alarm sounded – or what if there was a substitute teacher that day?
That evening, as she discussed her thoughts and fears with her husband, together they came up with an idea that would help all teachers and students secure their classroom doors more quickly and easily, even at a time of tremendous stress. And that is how Safe-Latch was born.
Of course many teachers, and parents, across the country have been coming up with their own solutions to manage classroom doors in the event of an incident. We recognize and acknowledge all of these ideas and the good intentions that stand behind them.
Our mission is to provide the simplest, and safest, method to do this job. To keep classrooms open and accessible during normal school days, and to give teachers and students a way to immediately and safely lock down classrooms if necessary – without creating any new risks or dangers.
We’ll be writing more about all of this in the blog posts to come. We want to share our knowledge, information, resources and support with all of the students, parents and school administration who work so hard to make school a safe place to learn and work. Wherever you are in the country, if education and safety are important to you, you are part of our community.