“Mrs. V” was a teacher at the Parkland, Florida, school where the massacre occured. When the second fire alarm rang out that day, she knew something was off.
Shanthi Viswanathan was teaching her Algebra II class when her instincts took over telling her to protect her students. She immediately locked the door and began papering the windows, so no one could see inside the classroom, and had all the students drop to the floor.
“She was quick on her feet. She used her knowledge. She saved a lot of kids,” Dawn Jarboe, who had a son, Brian, in the classroom, told The Sun Sentinel.
Even after the SWAT team arrived and requested access to the room, the teacher wouldn’t budge. “She said, ‘Knock it down or open it with a key. I’m not opening the door.’”
“Some SWAT guy took out the window and cleared our room,” Brian reportedly texted his mom. The RateMyTeachers.com website has a heartfelt comment from one of the students.
“Mrs. Viswanathan is a wonderful teacher who allowed me to expand my learning platform. She taught me with an appreciation of math in the real world. She cares about students and often stays after school to help her students with review sessions.
She never spends a day without teaching and always reassures every student understands the lesson. She wants every student to succeed and always tries the hardest to make sure we all do well.”
She is earning praise on social media for her heroic actions.