Florida superintendent: 'We need a smarter system' to prevent school shootings

The head of the Florida school district reeling from a mass shooting said Sunday he supports using a student’s school record in background checks for buying a firearm, and called for more collaboration among public safety agencies. 

“I believe that we have good quality information that’s out there and it’s not being used to ensure that we can provide the best public safety services that we can. So whatever information is available, it needs to be done while at the same time respecting the privacy rights of the individual,” Robert Runcie said on NBC's “Meet The Press.” 

Runcie is the superintendent of schools in Broward County, where 17 people were killed last week at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla.


Nikolas Cruz, 19, faces 17 counts of premeditated murder after he allegedly opened fire at the school last Wednesday, killing 17 and wounding more than a dozen others. He reportedly used an AR-15 that he was able to purchase legally.

Cruz had been flagged as a threat after he was kicked out of school, and the FBI acknowledged it failed to properly act on a tip it received about Cruz's erratic behavior and violent threats.

“Given what I’ve seen so far I believe that we need a smarter system," Runcie said Sunday. "We need a smarter infrastructure where various agencies, departments, school systems, they’re working in a more integrated, collaborative fashion to ensure that we can share data, we can share information to enhance our level of effectiveness."

He added that officials will do “everything that we can” to enhance law enforcement presence at the high school. The plan is to bring teachers back by the end of this week, and have students return next Monday, Runcie said.