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ALICE training: 6 months after, students still shaky

Senior+Hunter+Fee+demonstrates+how+to+use+the+new+locks+that+were+given+to+some+teachers+as+a+part+of+the+school%27s+new+ALICE+training.+While+some+doors+in+the+school+open+inward+and+can+be+propped+with+a+chair%2C+most+can+not.
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ALICE training: 6 months after, students still shaky

Senior Hunter Fee demonstrates how to use the new locks that were given to some teachers as a part of the school's new ALICE training. While some doors in the school open inward and can be propped with a chair, most can not.

Senior Hunter Fee demonstrates how to use the new locks that were given to some teachers as a part of the school's new ALICE training. While some doors in the school open inward and can be propped with a chair, most can not.

Frederick Choate

Senior Hunter Fee demonstrates how to use the new locks that were given to some teachers as a part of the school's new ALICE training. While some doors in the school open inward and can be propped with a chair, most can not.

Frederick Choate

Frederick Choate

Senior Hunter Fee demonstrates how to use the new locks that were given to some teachers as a part of the school's new ALICE training. While some doors in the school open inward and can be propped with a chair, most can not.

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New training for teachers.

Active shooter simulation.

Plans for a school resource officer.

Even after all of these improvements, students still seem to feel shaky about their safety at school. With all of the tragedies in the news, schools are struggling to keep students feeling safe. “If something does happen here, there is no protection,” junior Jon Clark thinks.

Within the last year, high school staff has been slowly implementing ALICE training. This means that some of the staff and students are now trained in how to best deal with an active shooter situation.

This new training is meant to be a way to be prepared for any situation.

Some students seem to constantly worry about school shootings. In an attempt to make our school safer, there have been two formal training sessions.

ALICE stands for alert, lockdown, inform, counter and evacuate. In 2017, English teacher Elizabeth Cyr was trained in the methodology using simulations. “We would hear gunfire in the building and then have to decide are we going to hide in place, are we going to barricade or are we going to evacuate?” Cyr said.

In addition to active shooter training, Cyr thinks one way to improve ALICE preparation is by incorporating architecture into the safety. For example, some doors in our school open outward so they can’t be blocked effectively with a chair.

All of the teachers went through this special training, but the same is not true for substitute staff. “I would like to see substitute teachers in our school district ALICE trained, because if there are multiple rooms that have substitute teachers during a school shooting, the substitutes might not know what to do or how to react in the situation,” junior Cassandra Chapman said.

While trying to get into contact with the chief of police at Stockbridge for a comment on this story, a police dispatcher from the Ingham County Dispatch said, “no one has checked in today.” This call was at 8:30 a.m. which means that sometimes during school hours there are no police on duty. This fact seemed to shock students.

Freshman Christopher Rosedale expressed his concern. “If there’s no police on duty, they probably wouldn’t be able to get here before too many people are hurt if there is a threat,” Rosedale said.

Junior Caleb Ricketts explained that even though most staff are ALICE trained, it doesn’t make him feel much safer in the school. “Training can only do so much,” said Ricketts. If he could improve the school’s safety protocol in any way, he would like to see a school police officer who is armed.

We have had police in our school before but it seems that none of them have ever stayed long.    

That may soon change.

“There is a plan. I have had conversations with the superintendent Karl Heidrich and some money is appropriated for that,” chief John Torres explained. “We’re just in the recruiting phase of trying to get someone in here that will have a consistent presence.”

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The student news site of Stockbridge High School
ALICE training: 6 months after, students still shaky