NAEA Statement in Response to the South Florida High School Shooting

Press Release

The following statement is from National Art Education Association President Kim Huyler Defibaugh, Ed.D.:

The deadly and horrific mass shooting on Wednesday, February 14, 2018, at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in South Florida, demands a call for urgent action on the part of our nation’s leaders.

Such immediate action has never been more critical. More than 150,000 students attending at least 170 primary or secondary schools have experienced a shooting on campus since the Columbine High School massacre in 1999, according to an ongoing Washington Post analysis.

The NAEA community expresses deep condolences to all members of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School community and to the many others impacted by this deadly act.

Much has been learned since the Columbine High School shooting and while teachers and students throughout our nation are “practiced” in important lock-­down protocols, that is not enough! Through the darkness of these tragedies, we must encourage both research and action at every level to ensure the safety and well-­being of our nation’s youth.

Our members, and the students we serve and protect, deserve a better, safer way of life than this. It’s time for our nation’s leaders to move forward immediately.

The following list of resources is offered to inform and support your efforts:

The National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) offers resources on school safety and crisis.

The American Educational Research Association (AERA) has a longstanding commitment to raising awareness of research on issues of school safety, including bullying.

  • Prevention of Bullying in Schools, Colleges, and Universities: Research Report (PDF)
  • AERA published research articles on bullying prevention and school safety
  • Special Issue of Educational Researcher: New Perspectives on School Safety and Violence Prevention
  • Fact Sheet: Selected Findings on K–12 Education and Bullying of LGBTQ Students (PDF)
  • Video: Presentation at AERA Capitol Hill Briefing about K-12 Education and Bullying of LGBTQ Students
  • “Chapter 6: Bullying and K-12 Students” from LGBTQ Issues in Education: Advancing a Research Agenda (PDF)

About NAEA
Founded in 1947, the National Art Education Association (NAEA) is the leading professional membership organization exclusively for visual arts educators. NAEA advances visual arts education to fulfill human potential and promote global understanding. Find out more about NAEA at

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