LODI, Calif. (KTXL) — Underlying tensions surrounding school shootings are one of the reasons the Lodi Unified School District will implement the anonymous reporting system known as Say Something.
“People make jokes about it but I hear fear behind it a little bit,” said Lodi High School student Megan Silva.
The system was created by the Sandy Hook Promise, a nonprofit founded by parents of some of the victims of the school shooting that took the lives of 26 people, 20 of them being young children.
The organization is known for its dramatic public service messages.
In addition to Sandy Hook Promise’s website, where tips can be submitted when there are hints of suicide, bullying or potential gunplay, the Say Something program trains students and staff on how to recognize telltale behavior or actions that can lead to tragedy.
“Our school sites will train students via video trainings, so students will learn the warning signs of students who may be at-risk of hurting themselves or others,” said LUSD spokesperson Chelsea Vongehr.
That includes all district students at the sixth grade level and above. Students will also be taught how to use an anonymous hotline, website and app that can be downloaded onto their phones.
Lodi High School student Cleveland McDougald said he has had friends threatened.
“There was people that called his name out and said they would mess him up, I mean, stuff like that,” he told FOX40.
Some feel the anonymous phone app will get some use.
“You can say a lot more behind text other than face to face, at least that’s what I feel like,” McDougald said.
“It takes away the fear of the stigma behind your the one that said something about this. Like you can say something in a safe environment and nobody has to know,” Silva said.
Tips will go to crisis counselors at Sandy Hook Promise to assess the danger threat and the district or law enforcement will be notified if need be.
District officials said it only takes 30 or 40 minutes out of the instructional day for students and staff and it is free of charge. Some feel the training is time well spent if it can save lives.
Statistics show in four out of five school shootings, at least one other person knew of the attacker’s plan but failed to report it.