Safety Center Teaches Central MN Schools on Disaster Response
AVON - If severe weather or an active shooter threatens a school, what are steps that need to take place to keep students and teachers safe?
Administrators from several Central Minnesota schools heard a presentation on Thursday at Avon Elementary from the Minnesota School Safety Center, which is part of the Minnesota Division of Homeland Security. Steve Stromme is the communications specialist for Albany Schools, he says their district is actively working to improve it's emercency response plan.
"Whether it's a weather related incident or God forbid a school shooting or bomb threat. We're just in a different place right now as a nation in our school systems."
Randy Johnson is the director of the Minnesota School Safety Center, he says they work with schools to better streamline their emergency planning.
"Should an event happen, whether it's a natural disaster or a violent event at a school, there's a lot of pieces and parts that need to be put in place."
Administrators were taught how to offer more effective emergency drills with their students. The center has developed training and guidance for anything from severe weather to bomb threats. They also offer school resource officer training and de-escalation strategies.
The Albany School District recently had a $33 million referendum passed by the community. About 25 percent of the money is going to improve school security. Upgrades are being made to buildings in order to better control entry areas. Offices are also being moved towards entrances.
"The body cannot go where the mind has not already been: that's a military slogan...But it's true that you cannot be prepared unless you've thought about what could happen," Stromme says.