Thirteen years ago when I was doing my student teaching at a local high school, coincidentally my own alma mater, I had a student who had obviously not been diagnosed with learning disabilities. He was a senior in my government class. He was quiet and respectful, but absent more than present. He asked me one day to help him because he could not concentrate on his work if there was noise. I did the best I could and went to his counselor who informed me (although I already knew this) that the student was 18 and on probation. It was his last semester and he wasn't going to graduate and they had "no responisibilities toward him" at this time they said. One day, after many days of absense he came into the classroom and sat down, chuckling and fidgeting in his seat. This wasn't characteristic of his normal behavior and I asked him what was so funny and to please settle down which he did. A few minutes later, the campus cop came in to the classroom, lifted him up out of his seat and took him outside. I immediately followed wanting to know what was going on but my mentor teacher who was in the classroom also literally caught me by my skirt as I tried to go out into the hallway. He told me, "Don't go out there, this student has a gun in his backpack" It turned out to be a loaded 9 mm weapon. I have never in my life been so frightened as I was then as I saw the student on the ground being arrested. At breaktime I went into the campus security and they showed me a picture of the gun but added, "We have guns on campus all the time"
The following month when I came to school we were on lockdown because two rival gangs had decided to have a shootout the day before in front on the school. Thank GOD no one was injured but the vet I take my animals too across the street from the high school had bullet holes in his walls. But the same day as the gang shoot out, in an unrelated incident only two miles away, was a murder. I had just returned home from picking my daughters up at my parent's home when I received a frantic call from my mother. There was gunfire all around her house she said and a man had come to their front door pounding to get in saying he had been shot. My mother, a nurse, did NOT allow the man in because she didn't know if he was a victim or the perpetrator. He was found collapsed in a pool of blood in the flower bed next to my parent's front door. My mother who is a VERY strong person, had to seek help for her guilt in not opening the door to her neighbor who had been shot. As it turned out, he was the lone survivor of his brother's killing spree. His brother had shot and killed both parents, their family dog and then turned the gun on himself. The blood on the doorstep would not go away, even if you could not see it eventually, it was there.
I don't have anymore to add but the stone in my heart for these incidents. There is something VERY VERY wrong.
Timeline of violent incidents at N. American schools
Updated Tue. Apr. 17 2007 10:45 AM ET
Added to by Robin
A list of some major violent incidents at North American schools.
April 16, 2007: A gunman fatally shoots 32 people in a dorm and a classroom at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Va. The gunman kills himself.
Oct. 2, 2006: A 32-year-old gunman enters an Amish schoolhouse in Nickel Mines, Pa., and holds 10 girls hostage before shooting them. Five girls are killed, and five more wounded. The gunman also kills himself.
Sept. 13, 2006: Kimveer Gill, 25, opens fire at Dawson College in Montreal, killing one woman and injuring 20 people.
Aug. 30, 2006: 19-year-old man in Hillsborough, N.C., kills father, then opens fire at Orange High School, wounding two students before surrendering to police.
March 14, 2006: 14-year-old boy in Reno, Nev., bring's father's revolver to Pine Middle School and wounds two classmates.
Jan. 13, 2006: 15-year-old boy at Milwee Middle School in Longwood, Fla., holds class hostage at gunpoint before being fatally shot by police. It is later learned his weapon was a pellet gun.
Nov. 8, 2005: Student at high school in Jacksboro, Tenn., shoots and kills assistant principal. Principal and another assistant principal wounded.
March 21, 2005: 16-year-old boy in Red Lake, Minn., fatally shoots grandfather and grandfather's partner at home, then goes to Red Lake High School, where he kills five students, a teacher and a security guard before committing suicide.
May 7, 2004: Two men, 18 and 24, shoot and wound four students at high school in Randallstown, Md.
March 30, 2004: Student at Wallace High School in Gary, Ind., shot to death in school parking lot by classmate.
Feb. 3, 2004: 14-year-old boy in Palmetto Bay, Fla., stabs and slits throat of 14-year-old classmate at Southwood Middle School.
Feb. 2, 2004: 19-year-old man shoots to death 17-year-old boy at Ballou Senior High School in Washington, D.C.
Sept. 24, 2003: 15-year-old boy shoots two classmates at Rocori High School in Cold Spring, Minn. One dies same day, other dies two weeks later.
April 24, 2003: 14-year-old boy shoots principal to death in school cafeteria in Red Lion, Pa., before killing himself.
March 5, 2001: 15-year-old freshman opens fire with .22-calibre pistol at Santana High School in Santee, Calif., killing two students and injuring 13 others.
Jan. 10, 2001: 17-year-old gunman fires shots at Hueneme High School in Oxnard, Calif., before taking female student hostage. He is later shot and killed by police.
May 26, 2000: 13-year-old honours student shoots and kills teacher on last day of classes in Lake Worth, Fla.
April 20, 2000: Four students and one staff member wounded in knife attack at Cairine Wilson High School in Orleans, Ont. Occurs on first anniversary of Columbine massacre.
Feb. 29, 2000: Six-year-old boy shoots six-year-old girl to death in Grade 1 classroom at Buell Elementary School in Mount Morris Township, Mich. Because of his age, boy is not charged.
Dec. 6, 1999: 13-year-old student fires at least 15 shots at Fort Gibson Middle School in Fort Gibson, Okla., wounding four classmates.
Nov. 19, 1999: 12-year-old boy shoots 13-year-old girl in head at school in Deming, N.M. Girl dies next day.
May 20, 1999: 15-year-old boy opens fire at Heritage High School in Conyers, Ga., with .357-calibre Magnum and rifle, wounding six students.
April 28, 1999: 14-year-old boy shoots two students, one fatally, at W.R. Myers High School in Taber, Alta.
April 20, 1999: Two heavily armed teenagers rampage through Columbine High School in Littleton, Colo., killing 12 students and one teacher before committing suicide.
April 16, 1999: High school sophomore fires two shotgun blasts in school hallway in Notus, Idaho. No one injured.
Feb. 8, 1999: Man fires shot at Woodland Elementary School in Verdun, Que. No one injured.
May 21, 1998: 17-year-old boy kills parents, then goes to high school in Springfield, Ore., on shooting rampage, killing two teens and wounding more than 20 people.
May 19, 1998: 18-year-old honours student opens fire at high school in Fayetteville, Tenn., killing classmate who was dating his ex-girlfriend.
April 24, 1998: 15-year-old boy opens fire at eighth-grade dance in Edinboro, Pa., killing teacher.
March 24, 1998: Four girls and teacher shot to death and 10 people wounded during false fire alarm at middle school in Jonesboro, Ark., when two boys, 11 and 13, open fire from woods.
Dec. 1, 1997: Three students die and five wounded at Heath High School in West Paducah, Ky., after 14-year-old boy opens fire.
October 1997: 35-year-old man fatally shoots teacher at Montreal language school for immigrants.
Oct. 1, 1997: 16-year-old boy in Pearl, Miss., shoots two students to death and wounds seven others after stabbing his mother to death.
Feb. 19, 1997: 16-year-old boy takes shotgun and bag of shells to school in Bethel, Alaska, killing principal and student and wounding two others.
October 1994: Two guidance counsellors at Brockton High School in Toronto shot and wounded by student unhappy with grades.
June 1993: Teen wounded outside Gladstone Secondary School in Vancouver in drive-by shooting.
Aug. 24, 1992: Valery Fabrikant, professor at Concordia University in Montreal, goes on shooting rampage at school, killing four colleagues and wounding one.
February 1990: Jilted teenager shoots and wounds estranged girlfriend at General Brock High School in Burlington, Ont.
December 1989: Marc Lepine, 25, shoots dead 14 women at University of Montreal's Ecole polytechnique engineering school, then kills himself.
October 1978: 17-year-old student shoots 16-year-old to death at Sturgeon Creek Regional Secondary School in Winnipeg.
Oct. 27, 1975: Robert Poulin, an 18-year-old militia sharpshooter, shoots six people at Ottawa's Saint Pius X school and then kills himself. One wounded student dies just over a month later. Poulin had killed a girl at a youth home before he went to the school.
May 1975: Michael Slobodian, 16, kills teacher and student and wounds 13 others at Centennial Secondary School in Brampton, Ont., before turning gun on himself.