Students today face all types of new challenges when preparing for school—how much it costs, what they want to study and their ability to grow in a career.

More recently however, they have been presented with a new type of threat that has changed the way they view education. Mass shootings in schools are a new type of extreme threat that face students today.

Often times one hears the voices of politicians in the media suggesting ways to fix the problem, but they often do not include the students. What do the people who are directly affected by these tragic events think and what ways they think they can better ensure their safety?

The way American students are impacted by guns is unparalleled by any other country of generation. Students are now taught ways to protect themselves in mass shooting situations because it has unfortunately become a possible reality. A columnist for The Guardian writes about her daughter’s testimony on living with mass shootings and how they have become a normal part of her life. Students now have to go to school knowing they may be killed.

Getting an education is a privilege students have living in this country, and it should be utilized to its fullest extent. That privilege should never be threatened or compromised to instill a fear of death in a student.

Taking risks is something that comes with even stepping out of the door, but school is a place that no one should fear. School should be a place of growth and learning; no one should be afraid to lose their life in a place that will help them grow.

The mass shooting epidemic that plagues America today is something that has been thrown around in media. Unfortunately, news channels are filled with tragic stories of shootings that take the lives of many people.

Alongside these stories of tragedy are disputes over what should be done about this ongoing issue.

It is not uncommon that you hear a politician expressing their concerns about gun safety, but not the students who are most often the direct targets. Students involved in the Parkland shooting began a movement pressing some type of gun control.

In an interview with The Washington Post, a student said, “‘You see these shootings on TV every day and very little happening around it. It’s painful to watch.’” This desperate plea for help from students should be what leaders focus on.

It is often seen as a battle between parties about who is right and who is wrong; it is as simple as understanding that students today are in fear losing their lives at school and that’s a problem. This discussion should focus less on political affiliation and more on the safety of Americans.

Students today are exposed to so many new things while pursuing education. New types of technologies and career paths are providing them with so much opportunity, yet many will not be able to pursue that dream.

A report by the National Education Association gives different tips on talking to students about mass shootings: the fact that these conversations are necessary speaks volume to the problem that hangs over the heads of youth in America. It is a problem that students face daily and scares them out of their minds. They are tired of hearing unthoughtful solutions that are plagued with politics and just want to ensure that their safety in school is a priority. To neglect this concern would be to neglect the student.

No person should ever feel afraid to go to school, especially in a country with such high regard for education. Every student should have confidence in their abilities to succeed without fear of their time to pursue their dreams being cut short.

The threats that face students today are unique to their time. Different problems arise as society continues to develop throughout time. However, it is crucial to recognize and think of solutions that will protect those affected. It is a responsibility that is placed on the shoulders of every American and should be held in high regard.

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