"I thought they were joking when they said they gave out bats", Jo Ellen Barish, who has a son in seventh grade in the district, told ABC News today.
Detail of bats during the game between the Boston Red Sox and the Toronto Blue Jays at Skydome on May 16, 2004 in Toronto, Canada. "It is the last resort", said Millcreek Schools Superintendent William Hall, "but it is an option and something we want people to be aware of".
"I'm glad that they bought us those sack lunches and stuff", said Corey, a fifth-grader.
District officials told the media outlet they spent $1,800 on the bats, saying they were mostly symbolic - but could be used if needed.
Munson said is concerned that children or teachers could use the bats inappropriately, but she added, "I think that we as a society need to do more to address the true issue here - why people feel they can go into a school and harm others the way they do".
In March, the Blue Mountain School District in Schuylkill County made a decision to place buckets of river rocks in each classroom in case students and staff can't evacuate.
The superintendent says the bats were given to each teacher after an in-service training day on how to respond to school shootings. Hall said that the district conducted an online survey to gauge the public's support on arming select staff members with guns if it became legal to do so in Pennsylvania, WSEE-TV reported. "We hope that other school districts can learn from your example of "if you see something, say something" to help prevent possible violence in their schools".
Millcreek Township School District has also been taking additional security measures at school entrances. "It was about 70 percent to 30 percent that people would favor that, but we're not really actively planning that right now". "We didn't talk about the other options of running or barricading... and how do you defend yourself".
US researchers have previously suggested that starting school later could improve the quantity of shuteye for the country's sleep-deprived teenagers, which in turn can also help boost health, behaviour, and academic performance.