Parents for Safer Schools: Action is the Antidote to Fear and Guilt

I can still remember the feelings of fear and guilt that washed through my body when I first heard a gunman had entered my daughter’s elementary school. Fear because only two months earlier, at a parent-teacher conference, I made comments to my husband about the flaws in the school’s security system. Guilt because I buried the pit in my stomach, despite knowing my child’s safety was in danger, and dismissed my concerns altogether. Guilt because I remember thinking the words, that would never happen here.  Not only did it happen a few months later, but my daughter, Emilie, would be one of the victims who would not survive.  

After the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary, I vowed to never silence my voice again.  This was the beginning of my journey towards becoming a school safety advocate and co-founding Safe and Sound Schools.  

When I travel across the country sharing my story, I am always approached by parents, just like me, who are concerned about their child’s school and feel completely lost about what to do. There was a lack of resources available for parents who also wanted to get involved in school safety, and I know from personal experience how intimidating the process can be.  

The Parents for Safe Schools program is designed for parents who want a more hands-on approach to school safety. This free program helps guides you on how to organize your own community dedicated to safety.  

Just like any school safety initiative, this is not a one-size-fits-all approach. That’s why the Parents for Safe Schools program offers different options, whether you want to start by learning more or sparking discussions at your school, or if you want to take action and advocate for safer schools in your community, Parents for Safe Schools has guidance just for you.

Over the years, I have seen how incredibly powerful the voices of parents advocating for their child can be. There is so much to be done, and Safe and Sound Schools invites you to join our mission. Together we can make our schools safe and sound.


Alissa Parker, Co-founder of Safe and Sound Schools

1 reply
  1. Dr. Elaine McFarlane
    Dr. Elaine McFarlane says:

    I’m a parent and a clinical psychologist in Belton TX, where you delivered a speech to our district’s leadership this past summer. Your materials are great! But I feel all alone in a district that refuses to talk about drugs, sex, suicide and gang violence at our high school. I am on a number of different commities, have spoken numerous times with the principal and other city administrators and no one will even admit to these issues. My kids are living through them. And yes, I’m working on my tone and approach. But I too have guilt for failing to respond to several “gut checks” when I feel I should’ve done something more. I am honestly afraid of what is coming. “It can’t happen here” is rampant. I know no one likes a whistleblower. So how can I alert a large number of parents about the degree of the problem when so many would rather shove them under the rug?

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