‘Never trained for this’: Texas teacher shares powerful video about school safety in Uvalde's wake
A Texas teacher has gone viral after she shared a video on TikTok and Instagram describing the sad reality of how educators in the US have to worry about their and their students’ safety while being in school. Taylor Mora, a seventh-grade English and language arts teacher at Garner Middle School in San Antonio, made the video in the wake of the Uvalde school massacre that killed 19 students and two teachers.
The 26-year-old captioned the 50-second clip, “It's sad that we as educators have to do these things & plan for the unimaginable happening, however this is the reality of being a teacher that a lot of people have no idea about. My heart goes out to Uvalde, the parents, students, teachers and anyone that has been affected by this. Enough is enough.”
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In the video, Mora can be heard saying while demonstrating her safety plans, “The reality of being a teacher is making sure your door can quickly lock in case there’s an active threat. It's having a window cover you can quickly pull down. Loving natural sunlight but having to pull down your window cover so no one can see inside your classroom. Making sure your safe place is always cleared [and] accessible in case an active threat happens during your conference or lunch.”
She continued, “Creating a plan for your students but knowing there are so many, 'Well what if they came in this way or how can I hide 20 plus kids and keep them quiet when they're afraid.' Heck, I'm afraid as I was never trained for this,” before adding: “Creating a plan but knowing it may not even be of use because you or the kids can easily be in the wrong place at the wrong time. It's feeling guilty and sad that you get to finish the rest of the school year with all of your students when there are teachers who won’t be able to do the same. Parents that won't be able to do the same. Being a teacher and student is scary right now and it doesn't have to be this way.”
Mora also spoke with PEOPLE about the daily fear teachers struggle with in school. She said, “I wanted to show people that, as teachers, we don't just teach content and grade students. It's much more than that. We have to protect kids in ways we never signed up for, and I wanted people to see that. We just want to keep our students safe — keep us and our students safe.”
Besides, she urged leaders to take a step before it’s too late. “We shouldn't have to go to school feeling on edge and unsafe. I know people love their guns here. But how many kids have to die before things change? If I had to give up anything — anything — to make school shootings stop, I would. Being a teacher in America now, it's very scary, very frightening, and we need changes,” the woman stated.
Mora’s video has garnered millions of likes and views with many commenting below it. A user wrote: “You have one of the most important jobs out there and I’m sorry that you and your students are being let down by those with the highest power who do NOTHING to prevent the mass tragedies that will only continue to happen because of their lack of acknowledgment for human lives. Thank YOU for doing your best. 💙 #enoughisenough.”
Another said, “Thank you for making this and sharing. These are those things that some people don’t understand. 🙏🏼.” “This!! Thank you for sharing. I have two closets in my classroom and have been keeping the floors/bottom shelves clear in case they are needed for hiding😢,” a third added.