Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Before and After The Shooting


Alexander Ceriani

On February 14, 2018, many families suffered a horrific tragedy after the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. A gunman opened fire with a semi-automatic rifle killing 17 people and injuring 17 others.Witnesses identified Nikolas Cruz, a 19-year-old former student at the school as the assailant.

He was arrested without incident about an hour later in nearby Coral Springs.He confessed to being the perpetrator, and he was charged with 17 counts of premeditated murder and 17 counts of attempted murder.

Cruz’s killing spree is the deadliest high school shooting in the United States history, surpassing the Columbine High School massacre that killed 15, including the perpetrators Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, in Colorado on April 20, 1999.

On February 14, 2020, it will be 2 years since the community had to live through this tragedy. Schools are creating many ways to honor the students who lost their lives that day. The students founded Never Again MSD an advocacy group that lobbies for legislative action on gun violence. On March 9, Governor Rick Scott signed a bill that raised the minimum age for buying rifles in Florida from 18 to 21.

The legislation also established waiting periods and background checks for gun buyers.  The district has been improving security to insure the safety of the students putting more officers and security in the schools. They have even increased their safety protocols and drills to make sure the students know what to do in different situations.

The School Board authorized $31 million in investments to address the top four priorities identified. The number one priority was deemed to be safety and security.In March 2018, legislators passed a wide-ranging legislative package that addressed school security improvements, increasing gun regulations and increasing mental health funding for schools.

In March, the Florida Legislature passed a bill titled the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Act. It raised the minimum age for buying rifles to 21, established waiting periods and background checks, provided a program for the arming of some school employees and hiring of school police, banned , and barred bump stocks some potentially violent or mentally unhealthy people arrested under certain laws from possessing guns.