School Shootings

A regular drumbeat of mass shootings in the U.S., both inside schools and out, has ramped up pressure on education and law enforcement officials to do all they can to prevent the next attack.

Close to all public schools in the U.S. conducted some kind of lockdown drill in 2015-2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.

Rae Ellen Bichell / Mountain West News Bureau

Instructor Graham Dunne is holding up some printouts with faces on them. He tells his students they're smaller than real heads.

"Here's some useless knowledge from being a sniper," he says. "The average human head is 6 inches across by 10 inches high. These are probably half that."

We're at the Flatrock Regional Training Center in Commerce City, Colorado. Usually the people training here are law enforcement, but today they're teachers, principals, bus drivers, coaches and school administrators — 13 of them.

Scott Franz/Capitol Coverage

Most of the offices inside the state Capitol are locked and dark this time of year as lawmakers enjoy some time off. But there was recently a flurry of activity in Rep. Dafna Michaelson Jenet's office as she prepared to lead a new committee of lawmakers who will try to make classrooms safer in the wake of the deadly shooting at STEM School Highlands Ranch.

It's 5 o'clock in the morning, and Sarah Salazar would rather be sleeping. Not just because it's early. Or because she's a teenager and can't seem to get enough sleep. Doctors say the shotgun pellets embedded in her shoulder, lung and back have sent her lead levels skyrocketing and leave her feeling tired much of the time.

STEM students
Michael de Yoanna / KUNC

As parents and students entered the school gym, several said they came to show support for the victims of the STEM school shooting as well as to build a sense of community.

Amy Wadlington, a mom from Castle Rock, said she came to the event at Highlands Ranch High School, near the school where Tuesday's tragic shooting took place, "to support the community and to show a united front for my daughter."

In the wake of the shooting at the K-12 STEM School in Highlands Ranch, Colorado, parents all over the country are struggling with difficult conversations about safety at school. One student was killed and eight were injured. Hundreds more lived through the terrifying experience of a shooting at their school.

The reality is that school shootings are traumatic events. And they can have long-lasting consequences.

Updated at 8:06 p.m. ET

A day after the shooting at STEM School Highlands Ranch in Colorado, local officials urged people not to view such attacks as part of life in Colorado.

"These are aberrant acts," 18th Judicial District Attorney George Brauchler said.

This week's attack happened not long after the 20th anniversary of the school shooting in nearby Columbine. The shooting injured eight people and left one student dead. Police say he has been identified by the Douglas County coroner as Kendrick Ray Castillo, 18.

Google Maps / KUNC / CBS Denver

A shooting at a STEM charter school in Highlands Ranch south of Denver left one student dead and eight others injured on Tuesday. Two suspects are in custody and appeared in court Wednesday. Here is the latest information we have, following a briefing by the Douglas County Sheriff's office early this morning.

Updated May 8 at 1:15 a.m. ET

Officials say one student is dead and eight students were injured in a shooting at a public charter school in Highlands Ranch, Colo., a suburb south of Denver.

In a tweet, the Douglas County Sheriff's Office said the deceased was an 18-year-old student at the STEM School.

Tony Spurlock
Stephanie Daniel / KUNC

Updated May 8 at 10:25 a.m. 

The Douglas County Sheriff says Kendrick Ray Castillo, the student killed in the shooting at the STEM School Highlands Ranch yesterday, was a senior who would have finished school on Friday.

Sheriff Tony Spurlock says they don't have information about a possible motive for the shooting at this time.

"We are still actively working the crime scene with our partners from the FBI. We anticipate that's probably going to take at least two more days for us to manage that," he said.

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