DES MOINES, Iowa (CBS St. Louis) — The Des Moines Register is being criticized for publishing online a map that shows which public school districts in the state have security and which ones do not.
The interactive map, which has since been pulled down from the website, showed red dots indicating which schools did not have guards and green dots to show which schools did.
Security experts were shocked that a major newspaper would publish such a map.
“It is difficult to understand why the Des Moines Register would publish an interactive map that identifies names and locations of schools in which our children are most vulnerable to potential attack,” Charles Segars, a safety and security expert with OPSEC Alliance Partners, said in a press release.
Des Moines Register editor Rick Green told Fox News that the state’s largest newspaper was investigating security in schools.
“The tricky part of this whole thing … is that when taxpayers and residents are calling us to inquire about how safe their kids’ schools are, we have to investigate it,” Green said.
Green said that they quickly removed the interactive map from the website after receiving angry phone calls.
“Do I wish we would have handled this differently? Obviously,” Green told Fox News.
The Des Moines Register reported at least 54 public schools employ an armed security guard or have police officers make rounds during the school day.
Segars believes this can be a learning experience.
“We cannot rely on journalists to ‘discover’ that security and safety is lacking for our children,” Segards said. “We must rely on ourselves.”
This is not the first time there has been fallout with a newspaper publishing “gun” maps.
The Journal News of Westchester, N.Y., pulled down its map they published of residents who had gun permits after receiving numerous complaints and threats.