Teachers Engage In Active Shooter Training


Andy Bryant

Former Chester Chief of Police Ryan Coffey (right) and Sgt. Bobby Helmers (now chief of police) gave a presentation Nov. 26, 2018, on surviving an active shooter incident.

Haley Hoskin, Associate Editor

On Tuesday, January 3rd, all staff of the local Chester schools came to Chester High School to do an Active Shooter training. This was mandatory for all staff in the public and local schools. Chester Police Chief Bobby Helmers explained that this training is very important.
This training was meant to teach the staff what to do in case of an active shooter. He stressed that, “in case of an active shooter coming, the teachers and staff are prepared and know what to do. However, if they didn’t have this training then bad things could end up happening.” The teachers have been asking for this training.
The training was broken down into different scenarios. First, everyone was taught what to do in case of an active shooter. It was based on the four E’s concept. The four E concept is based on what to do during an active shooter. These concepts include Educate, Evade, Escape, and Engage. There were five different sections. The first one was a classroom teaching section. This was where the staff sat in a room and were taught on what to do during an active shooting. The following scenarios were in different classrooms where the staff was split up into 7 rooms with about 20 people in each room. The first one was where they would lock down or Evade. The second one was that they could either choose to escape or lock down. The third one was where they could escape or attack the police officers who came in the room. The final scenario was where the staff could do whatever they wanted to get to their safe spot. There was a police officer in each room to examine how the teachers did in each scenario.
Not very many people got hurt, explained Chief Helmers. There were a total of two staff members. One of them was the high school English teacher, Mr. Mike Springton. He was throwing a three-hole punch at the police officer then when he went to tackle the officer. The three-hole punch hit him in the head. Then another teacher fell down the stairs and was sore from the impact. Chief Helmers said that, “it is normal with this kind of training to have some bumps and bruises, however, not normal for someone to get hit in the head with a three-hole punch,”
The training went well in the eyes of the police department. The teachers gained the knowledge of what to do when something happens and, hopefully, if something like this would happen no one would get seriously injured.
The Chester Police Department is hoping to do some kind of training that involves the students at the school in the next month or so. This was the first active shooter training done in Chester schools since Covid.