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Beloved cartoon 'Winnie The Pooh' teaches school students to 'run, hide, fight' during shootings

The book named 'Stay Safe' was sent home in backpacks of children in Texas and is scarier than the horror film 'Winnie the Pooh: Blood and Honey' to parents

Beloved cartoon 'Winnie The Pooh' teaches school students to 'run, hide, fight' during  shootings
Cover Image Source: IMDb

It is usually delightful when your child receives an innocent storybook from their school. However, being a parent to kids who attend school in Texas is no less than an anxiety-inducing challenge. Children as young as four years old in Texas are being taught how to respond to potential school shootings. These Dallas elementary school students returned home with a Winnie the Pooh-themed book that teaches them what to do in dangerous situations such as mass shootings. This alarmed parents and caused a backlash against the school. The book, written by a Houston-based law enforcement consulting firm, haunted parents more than the terrifying "Winnie the Pooh: Blood and Honey" film. One might think of it as a self-defense guide but it ironically acts more like a symbol of unsafety in schools. 



This message is delivered via a Winnie the Pooh book titled 'Stay Safe,' which instructs children to "run, hide, and fight" if an armed intruder enters their school. "If there is danger, let Winnie-the-Pooh and his crew show you what to do: Run, hide, fight," reads the book's subtitle, reports Marca US News. The recommended actions are illustrated by Winnie the Pooh and other characters from the "Hundred Acre Wood." "If it is safe to get away, we should run like a rabbit instead of stay," reads the book. "If danger is near, do not fear and hide like Pooh does until the police appear." A Dallas elementary school teacher expressed her deep concern about the book, calling it "terribly disturbing" and saying, "The fact that people think it's a better idea to put out this book to a child rather than actually take any actions to stop shootings from happening in our schools, that really bothers me. It makes me feel so angry, so disappointed. It's a year since Uvalde, and nothing has been done other than this book. That is putting it on the kids." 



The book also drew the attention of Gov. Gavin Newsom of California, who said on Twitter that "Winnie the Pooh is now teaching Texas kids about active shooters because the elected officials do not care to keep our kids safe and pass common sense gun safety laws." The Texas Education Agency, which oversees schools throughout the state, said the book was not part of an agency-wide initiative and referred questions about it to the Dallas school district, reports the New York Times. In a statement, the school district said that the book was sent home "so parents could discuss with their children how to stay safe" in dangerous situations at schools, such as shootings. Still, the district conceded that it should have given parents guidance about the book...We apologize for the confusion."  



The book was distributed about a week after a gunman shot and killed eight people, including three children, at an outdoor mall in Allen, Texas, a suburb north of Dallas, on May 6. According to Praetorian, the "Stay Safe" book was created by Texas police officers and teachers to teach elementary school students how to "remain safe and protect themselves should a dangerous school intrusion occur." The material, which features "the well-known and beloved characters" of Winnie the Pooh, teaches the "run, hide, fight" response, which the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the United States Department of Homeland Security recommend in an active shooter situation. 



Cindy Campos, whose two children attend a Dallas Independent School District elementary school, said she wasn't sure what to do when her youngest son, who is in prekindergarten, came home from school last week with the book titled "Stay Safe." "After you read a book to them, they have like 50 questions. How do you go to bed letting them know, 'Yeah, this is what you do if you get shot up at school,’ and then let them go to sleep? That's a nightmare waiting to happen," she said wondering why the book was distributed without instruction and calling the distribution "tone deaf" for being shared so close to the anniversary of a mass shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde. She perceived this as an attempt to  "normalize" gun violence. "It's heartbreaking," Ms. Campos said of having to talk to her children about gun violence. "We shouldn't have to talk to them about it, and it's so hard as a parent."


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