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Centre prepares for active shooter event

Staff writer

Centre administration is stepping up the district’s ability to protect students and staff against the possibility of an active shooter incident.

“It’s really important in today’s world to have the tools to be ready for any kinds of incidents we could face,” Superintendent Susan Beeson said. “We need to know how to best provide safety for all.”

Facilities manager Richard Idleman attended training on how to respond to an active shooter situation on campus. He will pass on that training to the staff.

“Richard is a member of our crisis team,” Beeson said. “He knows the facilities and would know how to move students out and into safe locations.”

The ALICE program — alert, lockdown, inform, counter, evacuate — details steps for teachers, staff, and students to be proactive and do whatever it takes to bar doors and keep a shooter out of rooms, or if unable to do so, use counter measures to distract him and evacuate.

This is a change from the procedure of lockdown and hiding under desks or furniture during a shooting threat.

“We will learn how to move students out rather than lock them in,” Beeson said.

The district has a security system that includes entrance monitors and security cameras. The staff has been trained to spot potential behavioral problems and call for counseling and intervention to prevent a crisis.

A study by Rural School and Community Trust, a Washington District of Columbia-based advocacy organization, revealed that two-thirds of rural school districts reported at least one violent crime during the 2009-10 school year.

It concluded that most violent school deaths occur in single events, usually as part of personal altercations, not in mass violence incidents.

Students, not intruders, are responsible for most incidents in middle and secondary schools. Intruders accounted for slightly more than 10 percent of all incidents.

Last modified Nov. 24, 2016

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