Broward County

Broward superintendent says public education faces ’9/11 moment’ after Parkland shooting

Animation breaks down cops’ response to Parkland massacre

Animation produced by state investigators shows how Broward Sheriff's Office deputies waited on the edge of campus after Nikolas Cruz shot and killed 17 at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Coral Springs Police Department officers rushed in.
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Animation produced by state investigators shows how Broward Sheriff's Office deputies waited on the edge of campus after Nikolas Cruz shot and killed 17 at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Coral Springs Police Department officers rushed in.

Broward Schools Superintendent Robert Runcie told a state commission investigating Florida’s worst school shooting that the United States is facing a “9/11 moment” for public education as it struggles to deal with violence in schools.

“We need to redefine what the education system looks like, what the priorities are,” Runcie said.

He opened his statement to the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Commission by apologizing to families that lost children during the Parkland massacre on Feb. 14.

Scot Peterson, former SRO at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High, did not show up at the MSD Public Safety Commission in November 2018, however, his attorney addressed the Commission while Superintendent Robert Runcie gave a personal apology to parents.

“I want to offer my condolences and say I am so, so sorry that you sent your kids to school that day like any other parent would, expecting them to return, and somehow we failed to live up to that promise to you,” Runcie told the commission at its meeting in Sunrise Thursday.

Two fathers of slain Stoneman Douglas students are on the state commission. Fourteen students and three staff members died when former student Nikolas Cruz showed up on campus, walked into the freshman building and opened fire with a semi-automatic rifle.

Runcie said he had just finished a ceremony awarding the keys to a Toyota Camry to Broward County’s teacher of the year when he got a call informing him of an incident at Stoneman Douglas. “The trauma that continues to inflict our community is extensive,” said Runcie, who has been superintendent of the nation’s sixth-largest since 2011.

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