Students Nervously Return to School After Shooting

Gary Seri, general manager at the Stone River Grille, hangs a message written on a table cloth on Saturday, Dec. 15, 2012, in Newtown, Conn., in honor of the teachers who died along with students a day earlier when a gunman open fire at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

Gary Seri, general manager at the Stone River Grille, hangs a message written on a table cloth on Saturday, Dec. 15, 2012, in Newtown, Conn., in honor of the teachers who died along with students a day earlier when a gunman open fire at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

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In the Chicago Public Schools, the nation's third-largest school district, officials said they would reiterate their existing safety and emergency-management plans to keep more than 400,000 students safe, and deploy police or counselors to schools as needed.

"With this incident, we took it as an opportunity to remind all of our principals to review and refresh their individual emergency-management plans and remind staff of standard safety protocol," said Chief Safety and Security Officer Jadine Chou.

Many schools will be holding a moment of silence Monday and will fly flags at half-staff.

Meanwhile, at home, many parents were trying their best to allay their children's fears while coping with their own. Kornfeld said her town is a lot like Newtown: a place where people generally feel safe being at home without the doors locked and playing outside after school.

"Why would that happen there?" she said. "It kind of rocks everything."

She sat down with her son and daughter after school Friday and explained to them what had happened. She reminded her children that they were with her, and safe.

"But it could have been us," her son replied.

Hoping to reassure them, she drove the children to their elementary school over the weekend. She wanted them to know it was still a safe place.

"Our school is the same as it was when you left," she told them. "It's going to be fine."

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Contributing to this report were Associated Press writers Jay Reeves in Birmingham, Ala.; Brett Zongker in Washington; Bob Christie in Phoenix; Holbrook Mohr in Jackson, Miss.; Amy Forliti in Minneapolis; Michelle Nealy in Chicago; Susan Haigh in Norwich, Conn.; and Jeffrey Collins in Columbia, S.C.

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