Agawam Public Schools step up active shooter training - Western Mass News - WGGB/WSHM

Agawam Public Schools step up active shooter training

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A school shooting is a nightmare scenario that no school system ever wants to go through.

Unfortunately, school shootings are a grim reality, and once again everyone is talking about school safety.

Fear from parents and grandparents alike about school safety following the latest school shooting in Florida.

To be pro active, Agawam School Superintendent Steve Lemanski told Western Mass News that active shooter training in schools has been stepped up.
"We're continuing to train more teachers as trainers but all of our staff in this year trained , students also gone through," said Superintendent Lemanski. 

That training is being conducted by School Safety Director John Nettis. 

From power point presentations to what should be expected, to reality based training through a program called ALICE.

"ALICE stands for alert, lockdown , inform, counter, and evacuate," said Nettis. 

Nettis said the training is added to be as realistic as possible to simulate actual active shooter conditions.

"This reality based training which involves air soft as well as blanks there's a cognitive switch if something like this occurs and we want to start conditioning people to go ahead and manage that level of stress so they make conscious decisions in the right direction," Nettis explained. 

The challenge of a real active shooting scenario is that options to save lives vary  depending on conditions..

"What we want you to do is get out of school very safely, if that's not available for you we want you to have the ability to lock  in your classroom barricade the door, and prevent any intruders from coming in," Nettis added. 

If that's not possible, training includes fighting techniques to try and keep you and others alive and avoid a tragedy like Florida.

"I don't want the same thing to happen here. No one wants the same thing to happen here that's why we're providing this level of training for students and teachers in Agawam," Nettis continued. 

Authorities also want to emphasize the importance of saying something if you see something.

Copyright 2018 Western Mass News (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved. 

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