There was no discussion and no commentary. On the anniversary of the Sandy Hook Elementary School tragedy, the Broward County School Board unanimously approved a $25 million dollar settlement with the victims of the Parkland massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.
The two MSD victims on the school board, Lori Alhadeff and Debbi Hixon, recused themselves from the vote.
“There’s mistake after mistake after mistake, they knew that he was a threat,” said Max Schachter, speaking about the failure of the district to prevent the shooter from resorting to violence.
Schachter’s son, Alex, was just a freshman at MSD when he died in the rampage. Schachter told us the settlement represents a small bit of solace and hopefully, he said it sends a message.
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“This doesn’t change anything," Schachter said. "Every day, I wake up and Alex isn’t here. I can’t give him a kiss and see how he’s doing. He’d be in college this year, he’d be having a great time, but he’s not here, and it’s because of the failures that led up to this horrible tragedy, the worst, deadliest school shooting in U.S. history. People need to be held accountable, and this is a sign of that."
Families of the victims who died will each receive around $1 million. Survivors who were wounded will receive lesser amounts, depending on the severity of their experiences.
“On so many different levels, this never should have happened, this was preventable," Schachter said. "Alex and the 16 others should still be here today, and I hope that this message is strong enough so that every school district understands that they have to prioritize safety and security, nothing is more important.”
Parkland School Tragedy
The board also approved a separate settlement with Anthony Borges, an MSD student who miraculously survived multiple gunshot wounds that day.