Sheriff: Alburnett gun incident shows importance of training - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Sheriff: Alburnett gun incident shows importance of training

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ALBURNETT (KWWL) - A scary situation at Alburnett High School has put teachers' new training to the test.

While the situation was only a misunderstanding involving a pellet gun, had this been a live shooter situation, district employees had the training they needed to keep kids safe.

"We had one teacher at least that came up to us and said, 'Thank you for the training. Had I not received the training, I could have done something that would have put us in harm's way. Instead, we got the training. We got the students out of harm's way. Thank you for providing the training,'" said Brian Gardner, Linn County Sheriff. "That's what we're looking for -- to make the students and the staff as safe as possible in one of these situations."

For about a year, the Linn County Sheriff's Office has been offering ALICE training to schools. That's Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, Evacuate.

Instead of always locking down in place, teachers learn options, like getting students off property and locking down there.

"It empowers teachers to take action before we get there," said Gardner.

Some districts just train staff. Others include students. The sheriff's office talks to districts in advance and offers as much or as little of the training as the school is comfortable with.

"We actually have a drill where we involve the simulation, the sound of weapons being fired, of people talking gruffly, of people ordering them around, to make it as realistic as possible," said Gardner.

The Linn County Sheriff's Office has provided training to all schools it provides law enforcement services for except one. The sheriff would not name that district, but did say its employees will be going through training in the future.

Businesses can also go through training.

We checked with other schools in the area. In Iowa City, staff went through ALICE training and students will soon. Waterloo, Dubuque, and Cedar Rapids do not use ALICE, but do have security plans and other training.


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