With summer drawing to a close, children across America are engaged in age-old back-to-school rituals. For many, the start of school also involves something newer — active shooter drills, possibly even with fake blood and blanks fired in the hallway for added realism.

Countless schools have adopted these simulations, voluntarily or by legislative mandate. The hope is that students and faculty will be sufficiently prepared should some dispirited student or deranged intruder decide to turn the school into a battle zone.

Although well-intentioned, active shooter drills, first introduced after the 1999 Columbine massacre and now more prevalent after the 2012 Sandy Hook shooting spree, can do more harm than good.