Schools As Centers of Community Shelter

Late to this, I’ve been away last two weeks.  But, if you didn’t read David Von Drehle and Jeffery Kluger’s TIME cover story on the Moore tornado then it’s worth a look. Riveting.  One thing that comes through clearly is that in some parts of the country that are tornado prone a mix of economics and geography makes basements and shelters scarce.  So while the nation has made a lot of progress on tornado warnings, if you don’t have a safe place to go a warning is helpful but not necessarily life saving.

Meanwhile, we talk a lot about schools as “centers of communities” (a lot more than we act on it).  But as we saw in Oklahoma only some schools are built to withstand major tornadoes.  So isn’t an obvious threefer an effort to ensure that schools in tornado prone areas are not only prepared for storms like this but can take in local residents without somewhere else to go? It’s a threefer because it makes schools safer for students in the event of a catastrophic storm, helps with overall public safety, and is the kind of economic stimulus and infrastructure investment that has lasting value.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *