EACS Plans to Implement New Lockdown Procedure

Published 02/17 2014 06:34PM

Updated 02/18 2014 08:50AM

East Allen County School officials feel the safety of their students and staff is so important, they want to implement a new lockdown procedure. the procedure would protect students better in the case of an active shooter or any situation where they could be seriously hurt.

School shootings have become a national problem in recent years and they've been occurring more frequently. in the case of one happening in East Allen County Schools, officials don’t want to offer condolences. Instead they want a solution.

EACS wants to see their students and staffs practice a new method to protect themselves from a crisis situation. School officials say the current system is just not good enough. The current lockdown that we use doesn’t give students and staff any tools to use in case there was an attack."

To better serve students and staff, EACS officials want to bring in A.L.I.C.E. A.L.I.C.E. is a system that stands for Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, Evacuate, but not necessarily in that order. A.L.I.C.E. is already being used by a school system in Carmel Indiana. It’s also one encouraged by the F.B.I.

"Maybe locking themselves in the room may not be the best decisions based on the information that they have."

EACS Superintendent Ken Folks says currently, if staff is told there is an active shooter on campus, they are trained to lock the doors, turn off the lights, and hide quietly under desks or in a corner. A.L.I.C.E. however, encourages people to exit the building.

"School safety is a high priority for us,” said Folks. If we feel like there's a better way and we can keep their child safer, we need to explore it."

"It allows them to make some common sense decisions to stay alive," said Jeff Studebaker, the districts Safety Manager and trained school safety specialist. He says the system will cost about $12,000 for training. If approved at Tuesday’s board meeting, ALICE will be ready to go by the start of next school year.

"When you consider the benefits, I think that's a good deal," said Studebaker.

Parents and members of the community are encouraged to attend Tuesday night’s meeting to learn more about ALICE and give your input. That meeting will be held in the New Haven High School auditorium at 6:30 p.m.

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