Education

One Teacher Details How Broward County Public Schools Handled The Aftermath Of The Parkland Shooting In Scathing Op-Ed

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Neetu Chandak Education and Politics Reporter
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One Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School teacher detailed how Broward County Public Schools (BCPS) allegedly handled the Parkland shooting aftermath in an op-ed Wednesday.

Math teacher Kimberly Krawczyk accused BCPS of several missteps in the aftermath of the Parkland shooting, from having ineffective counselors to building a “political narrative,” she wrote in The 74 Million.

Krawczyk was in the same building as the shooting on February 14, 2018, leaving 17 people dead.

“So much suffering could have been mitigated if our local leaders had focused more on getting kids the help they needed and less on trying to craft a national political narrative,” Krawczyk said.

Krawczyk said district leaders “put all the blame on the National Rifle Association”

She continued that the public saw promotion efforts like ‘#MSDStrong’ to show the community was determined, but did not see the alleged inadequacies of mental health services offered to students and staff. BCPS allegedly did not “implement a basic standard of care,” provide counselors with trauma experience or contact teachers at the shooting’s site over whether they needed mental health services.

BCPS, however, said they opened five locations for the Stoneman Douglas community to get mental health support, trained 50 district staff members to provide clinical supervision until May and “engaged national experts,” according to The 74 Million.

Krawczyk claimed counselors had “short stints” at the school and students stopped looking for help. She recalled a conversation where one student did not want to see a counselor again because she would tell a “different person the same story” and that the counselors could not deal with it.

“‘They’re not stupid, they’re just shitty,'” the student reportedly told Krawzyk. (RELATED: Second Parkland Shooting Survivor Dies In ‘Apparent Suicide’)

The op-ed also cited mother Lisa Olson criticizing officials at a district board meeting in April 2018. Her son suffered bullet injuries.

“Even the president of the United States, the first lady, the governor, the attorney general, the chief of staff and a senator had the time to hug my son,” Olson said. “But not my school district, and not my son’s principal.”

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Former Parkland student Sydney Aiello, 19, and 16-year-old student Calvin Desir both died due to suicide, the Miami Herald reported. Aiello committed suicide March 17 due to reported survivor’s guilt while Desir died Saturday, though it was not clear why he killed himself.

Andrew Pollack, who lost his daughter Meadow in the massacre, shared the op-ed on his Twitter page and expressed disdain toward media coverage and the Superintendent’s Robert Runcie’s response Thursday.

“If @CNN, @MSNBC & @RobertwRuncie had spent half as much time covering Parkland survivors’ trauma as they did on the gun debate, maybe we wouldn’t be losing students to suicide,” Pollack tweeted.

Stoneman Douglas serves more than 3,000 students, according to BCPS’s website.

BCPS did not immediately respond to The Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment. TheDCNF reached out to Krawczyk via Facebook Messenger, but did not receive a response.

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