The 2019-2020 school year at PHS has been full of changes and new upcoming additions. This year we have continued to go through teaching the students and staff on our ALICE training.
I spoke with the PLE music teacher Robin Apold to get a good description of what ALICE training is. “It’s just a proactive way to be ready in the event that something horrible were to happen or somebody would come into the building with the intent to harm students and teachers,” said Mrs. Apold. With our knowledge of past school shootings or violent events, we have seen that the threat has been a student more times than many. With having a program like ALICE training, we are encouraged to discuss what our options would be in case of a dangerous situation, a concern is should we be giving out all this information to students? Using what we know about these shootings being attempted by students, they would know how to avoid being caught or where to find their classmates based on these conversations.
“As to thinking even though you might be giving away ‘secrets’ as to how we’d handle a situation like that, we would be losing fewer lives.” ALICE training from the perspective of a teacher evolves remaining calm and taking charge of a situation that can be dangerous. Senior Lauren Schaefer gave a few words as well, “The measures that we’re taking are strong, I don’t like when we’re in a class and a teacher points out a way to avoid the threat and if the threat was there to hear that info they would know where we are.” It is becoming harder to protect students without having to inform them about our escape plans. It is a risk that we might have to take as a school, and from what Mrs. Apold had said, it is a decision that has been made and most likely not changed.
We are seeing positive effects from doing ALICE training, students are feeling more prepared and knowledgeable about how to handle a threatening situation. “And you know the bottom line is you know we’re pushing the See Something Say Something kind of agenda because we recognize that if there is a threat present it maybe you know a student who gets an indication of that before a staff member. So we just wanted you to know students to keep that in mind. See something say something.” said Ally Molini. One of the bigger additions to Pewaukee High School was adding a police officer to our staff.
Our officer at PHS has really made a change in how safe students feel when they come to school every day. Pewaukee High School has taken the time since last year to put the safety of all their students and staff first, this is a major step in preventing scary and horrific events in United States school system history from happening frequently or ever again.