Amid mental health concerns, new bill would allow NY students to opt out of lockdown drills

Amid mental health concerns, new bill would allow NY students to opt out of lockdown drills

New York lawmakers will seek to change the state’s school lockdown drill laws, as some parents argue the drills harm student mental health without clearly proven safety benefits.

Under state law, public schools must conduct lockdown drills at least four times each year. The new bill would drop the requirement to one, among other changes.

Though high-profile school shootings in Uvalde, Texas, and Nashville, Tennessee, have raised further alarm among parents, educators, and school communities, some parents worry about the damaging effect that repeatedly forcing students and teachers to simulate an active shooter scenario could have on their child.

Two dads with children at a Manhattan elementary school spent the past year and a half pushing to reduce the number of drills and for more guardrails in how they are conducted and communicated with families.

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