What We Can Do Now
1. Alyssa’s Alert, a duress button in schools will execute communication in a life threatening emergency situation.
2. A behavioral threat assessment is a systematic process that is designed to identify situations/persons of concern, investigate and gather information, and assess and manage the situation in order to mitigate risk. Read more here.
3. Lock classroom doors.
4. Red tape. Every class room should have red tape, marking off the area that would be out of sight through the door window should there be a shooting. This is the safer space. A second area should be marked off if a shooter is at the window. In Elementary Schools a fire truck could be drawn on wall of the safer space. The teacher could quietly read a book on fire trucks.
5. Scenario based training drills at school. Parents, teachers, and students, demand unexpected scenario based training drills at school. To create muscle memory in responding to a life threatening emergency situation. This should become part of teacher audits and evaluations. Teachers and students, we urge you to create a task force to lead this undertaking.
6. Consult with mental health professionals to teach proper breathing techniques. For example, belly breathing helps with stress management.
7. Security self-education. Parents, teach your kids at home without solely relying on the schools. Here are some helpful tips:
– Encourage your children to have a voice and use it. This is not the age of being quiet. It’s a generation rooted in speaking up. If they don’t feel safe at school, talk to them about it and enable them to talk to the faculty.
– Explain to your children that if a shooter is in the school, they need to get out of eye-line view. Show them what that means and run your own drills at home.
– Lights out! Make it hard for a shooter to see what’s in a room. If there is time and a shooter is in the school, explain to your children that shutting the lights in the room and closing the blinds is helpful.
– Consider getting your children bulletproof backpacks. Show them how to wear it in front of their body in a code-red so that their vital organs are protected. Double-check that the backpack protects against an AR15.
8. Stop The Bleed Kits. These kits can help with traumatic injuries that can happen suddenly and unexpectedly. These kits can be the difference between life and death. Teachers also need proper training to properly use the stop the bleed kits. Buy a 1 gallon bucket. In the bucket you can create a personal classroom, “Safer Spaces Emergency Bucket.” In the bucket should be your stop the bleed kit, class list with emergency contact information, flashlight, lollipops, iPad with head phones, first aid kit, toilet paper, evacuation protocols, books, water bottles, granola bars, pepper spray. The bucket becomes a “bathroom” in an emergency.