Frequently Asked Questions for Parents about ALICE school safety drills
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Q: What is ALICE and ALICE training?
A. Sebeka School District #820 updated its safety plan in the 2018-2019 school year. As part of this initiative, the safety protocol called ALICE has been implemented in the unlikely event of an armed intruder in our school building. This training encourages staff and students to respond based on their situation, rather than rely on centralized instructions in dynamic times of crisis.
ALICE is federally endorsed safety protocol. The letter ALICE stands for Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter and Evacuate:
Alert – inform people of the threat, giving as much information as possible.
Lockdown – Students and Staff can choose to lockdown and barricade the room that they are in if they determine that it is not safe to evacuate.
Inform – pass on as much information as possible to others and to First Responders, including contacting 911.
Counter – an effort of last resort, if an armed intruder is able to get into the space that they are in; students are being trained to use every effort to stop the intruder instead of being passive victims.
Evacuate – If it is safe to do so, all are encouraged to evacuate the building, and remove themselves from the threat.
Learn more about ALICE Here
Under ALICE training, staff and student are oriented to different options to respond to a school intruder who is intent on doing harm. In certain circumstances, the “lock the door and hide” strategy might be appropriate. In some cases, the teacher and students might take precautions to barricade the entrance(s) of the classroom. Under certain conditions, it might be the best decision for the teacher and students to flee the building. It is the intention of ALICE that the strategies we provide will increase the chances that our staff and students might survive if terrible circumstances of an armed intruder ever were to occur.
Q: Are people expected to follow ALICE in order? Are you supposed to Alert, then lockdown, then inform?
A: ALICE is not intended to be a checklist of things to do. It is a list of choices, with accompanying strategies, that are options for our students and staff to help them stay safe in the highly unlikely event of an armed intruder. Some may choose to evacuate and some may choose to lockdown and barricade. Others may be forced to counter if an armed intruder is able to enter the space they are in. ALICE trains people to know they have choices in an emergency situation.
Q: Does the “Counter” part of the protocol mean fighting back?
A: The main intent of Counter is to distract the intruder, not try to physically take on the intruder. An example of Counter would be to throw objects at an intruder for a distraction. Passive or static has typically not shown to be an effective response in most Active Shooter events. There are examples within recent events of school violence where the difference between passive and active response determined survival chances. A different approach is needed to help keep our students and staff safe.
Q: How will parents be notified if their child’s school is in lockdown?
A: Notifications will be sent out using all manners of school communication, including an email, text message and phone call from Infinite Campus Emergency Messenger, social media, website updates, media alerts, and any other venue that we have at our means. Families are encouraged to review their email and phone number on Infinite Campus Parent Portal to ensure that they are receiving school messages in the manner they desire. A line to parent portal can be found here: Infinite Campus Parent Portal
Q: How will the information be presented to children at the Elementary and Middle School levels?
A: All drills and training will be age appropriate. The Sebeka School District will be sure that we do not scare or confuse any students while at the same time getting them the information they need if an event occurs. Additionally, at this time, there is no plan to have simulated shooters in our buildings while students are learning about ALICE. All learning will be staff-directed and student-centered. Parents are encouraged, if they wish, to contact Mrs. Kern, Mr. Roberts or Mrs. Westberg with specific question and concerns.
Q: Where can I go to find out more about ALICE?
A: Here are is a link to external information about ALICE. There are many more should you choose to do an independent search. https://www.alicetraining.com/