Washington, D.C. (WLTX) - The United States Secret Service (USSS) is encouraging schools to implement new guidelines that could help prevent mass shootings.
Between January 1st and May 21st of this year, there have been 23 school shootings around the nation. For years the USSS has been doing research on school shootings, looking for ways to prevent them.
In a report released on July 12, 2018, the USSS maps out ways to prevent school shooting by developing what they're calling "threat assessment teams." These teams would monitor student behavior and intervene with students who may be struggling.
The teams would be made up of teachers, staff, administrators, coaches, school resource officers and community members. The report suggest that they meet regularly.
In South Carolina, a law was passed this month that would require school districts to develop safety plans. Those plans would include fire, severe weather, and active shooter/intruder responses.
A district certainly would be, they'd be allowed to include a team like that as part of their school safety plan," says Senator Greg Hembree, R-Horry County.
Sen. Hembree proposed the original bill, requiring districts to develop these plans by the 2019-2020 school year. He says this report from the USSS can help give direction for schools.
"With that report, that recommendation being out there, it seems prudent for a district to take a look at that when they are developing these plans," says Sen. Hembree. "I think it gives direction and compliments the efforts that the General Assembly has already made."
The report also suggest that the team discuss sudden changes in student behavior and what may have prompted that.
Schools need to develop multiple ways students can communicate, including anonymously, when a classmate says or does something that worries or frightens them.
In over 80 percent of school mass shootings, another student knew something that indicated a fellow-student may commit an act of violence.