Are We Safe?

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Are We Safe?

Zachary Placek, Staff Writer

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Teens across America projected 2018 to be a year full of positivity. What they did not anticipate, however, is the overwhelming number of school shootings. The place where learning and growth is supposed to take place is now full of fear and uncertainty. With all the fear spread throughout the nation’s schools, one question goes through everyone’s minds: Are we safe?

Alliance High School has taken many precautions to ensure student safety. Principal, Mr. George Clear, explained that many steps go into responding to a threat at school.

“Safety is our number one issue. If the school isn’t safe, then the student can’t learn,” said Clear.

Officer Felker was reinstated as our School Resource Officer to ensure extra security during the school day. Our office also in in charge of electronic locks with security monitors at the two main entrances of the school. This allows the secretaries in the office to see who is trying to get into the school. These two doors are only unlocked before school, during lunch, and after school. During the rest of the school day, these doors are locked and there is no other way in.

In the event of an active shooter or threat, Alliance High School and many others in Nebraska follow procedures recommended by the Nebraska Department of Education. Schools from all over Nebraska have the same alerts over the intercom and the same procedure. The alert we would hear in the event of a lockdown is, “Lockdown! Locks, Lights, Out of Sight.”

The procedures recommend that classrooms lock the doors, turn the lights off, and hide in a spot that can’t be seen from outside the door or window. Some people suggest to try to get out first, hide second. Clear suggests that students should only try to escape if they are in a bathroom or other area of the school where they cannot get a locked door between them and the threat. If they were to escape the school, they are to run to the Middle School or the Admin building.

When most people think of an active shooter situation, they usually think of a single shooter; however, Mr. Clear stresses the fact that there could be another threat and staying in the classroom would be the safest option.

This semester, Clear plans to have a lockdown drill on an unannounced date to practice strategies. During this drill, he and some police officers will go room to room and critique each classroom’s hiding positions and give them tips. He also said we would have an all-school assembly to give out vital information on our school’s safety and to address any concerns we have.

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