Since the Columbine High School massacre in April of 1999, schools across the nation have taken steps to increase security in preparation for a worst case scenario.
To illustrate the safety measures taken by the Creston Community School District, the administration provided a presentation Thursday evening for parents and the public.
Students in the district have watched instructional videos and participated in drills prepared by the ALICE Training Institute and instructed by school resource Officer Mitch Pashek.
“I get them engaged with e-learning and follow up with drills,” said Pashek.
ALICE is an acronym that represents the five steps to take during an active shooter situation:
• Alert others by using plain and specific language to warn others to the danger
• Lockdown the area and prepare to take further steps
• Inform others of the intruders location by means such as phone or surveillance
• Counter the intruder by creating noise, movement, distance and distraction with the intent of reducing the shooter’s ability to shoot accurately
• Evacuate when safe to do so.
Students are trained in specific scenarios where some options may not be viable, such as instances where evacuation isn’t achievable. However, Pashek illustrated the importance of evacuating when the time is right by playing the audio of the police call from the library of Columbine High School during the shooting.
“Evacuating is the preferred response,” said Pashek.
The ALICE Training Institute has the endorsement of FEMA, and law enforcement agencies such as NYPD and the FBI.
The CCSD will soon be instituting the use of the Raptor Visitor Management System, a device that does a one-time scan of a visitor’s state-issued ID and checks it against the sex offender registry. The scan doesn’t take any personal information of an individual such as social security number, only taking the name, birthday and state the individual resides in.
If the results come back clear, a badge will automatically be printed for the visitor to wear.
“Once you’re in the system, you’ll just check in and they’ll give you a badge,” said Brendalee Lyell-Keate, IT Technician for the district. “That way staff knows who you are and know you are allowed in the building.”