Annandale High School Shooting
Annandale High School Shooting
Several days ago, Annandale High School in Arlington, VA suffered a horrific shooting that has prompted an outpouring of grief from the community. Many people are wondering what can be done to ensure that similar incidents like this do not occur again. This article will explore a few of the possible ways that Annandale can better protect its students.
Diversity at Annandale High School
Founded in 1954, Annandale High School in Washington, DC, is a diverse school, with a student body representing more than 90 different countries. The school is a member of the Fairfax County Public Schools system. Annandale High students come from a wide range of economic backgrounds and ethnicities.
The school’s administration, along with community members, decided to create a school climate where every student feels valued. The school administration created an inclusive honors program and introduced an International Baccalaureate (IB) program.
The school administration also created a peer mediation program that helped students learn how to disagree peacefully. Students met with peer mediation counselors and participated in small-group dialogues about dating and other adolescent issues.
In addition, the school’s parent groups met to talk about issues facing teenagers. The group discussed values and how to best raise teens.
Threats on social media
Several schools have been evacuated and students have been put on lockdown due to threats of violence on social media. The latest threat was a photo that went viral across the country. Originally posted in South Carolina, the photo warned of “round two in Florida tomorrow.”
The post quickly made its way to other Treasure Coast schools. At least two students were arrested and charged with felonies. The post was also investigated by school officials and police.
While not all social media threats are dangerous, they can be very stressful for students and parents. Authorities take these threats very seriously. Hundreds of schools have been shut down across the country due to threats of violence. Some have closed on specific dates, but other schools kept their doors open.
Homecoming Queen of Annandale High School
Traditionally, Annandale High School has had a competitive football program. Historically, the Annandale Atoms have won six state championships since 1965, and have been named the best high school football team by the National Sports Service. This year, Annandale is gearing up for a big game against Waconia at 7 p.m. on Oct. 11, and has been promoting the event for months.
For the past five years, Annandale has stayed relatively flat. The school has a student population of 2,233, and a student demographic of 82 percent Hispanic, 16 percent African-American, and 6 percent Asian. The school is in the bottom half of schools in the state for overall test scores and reading proficiency.
Homecoming is a big deal at Annandale High School. It’s a time for students to dress up in a parade, sell Homecoming buttons, and get ready for a big game. This year, Annandale will host Waconia on Oct. 11, and have a tailgate party before the game.
Signs for LGBTQ+ students
Thousands of students across Virginia walked out of class on Tuesday. Activists said they were protesting proposed policies that would make it harder for transgender and nonbinary students to participate in school. These policies would also affect their social lives, grades, and mental health.
The Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) at Annandale High School was one of the groups that helped design “safe space” signs for the LGBTQ+ community. These signs were displayed in classrooms to provide a safe place for LGBTQ+ students. The club has its own t-shirts and signs to help students know who to talk to about their sexual orientation and gender identity. The group also supports students’ right to peaceful assembly.
The Annandale Public Schools Superintendent, Tim Prom, has worked with Flint Consulting, a firm that helps equip school leaders in cultural responsiveness, to develop a three year plan. The goal of the three year plan is to help the district address the needs of all students. Besides providing resources, the district will work to implement equity education and training.
Re-engaging students at Annandale High School
Despite the tragedy at Annandale High School on Wednesday, students and faculty have shown they are not about to sit around and let this happen. Instead, they are taking a stand against bullying and using their voices to support fellow students.
Annandale High School is one of the most diverse high schools in Fairfax County. Students come from more than 43 countries, and a majority of them are from immigrant communities. In fact, one senior arrived from Bangladesh in eighth grade. There are 40% English language learners, and 80% of the graduating class speaks a language other than English at home.
The Annandale High School community is working hard to re-engage students socially and academically. For example, the Gay-Straight Alliance club designed signs that showed LGBTQ students were welcome in the building.