The Terminology of Emergencies

Lately, students have to guess whether their school days will be on a normal 8 period schedule or changed due to threats like bullet shells found in the hallway or actual bullets found in the bathroom. With this new awareness of what could possibly happen, knowing what to do in the darkest hour could possibly save lives. The following are steps taken by the administration to maintain the safety of students and staff.

A precautionary step that could take place is known as a ‘secure building.’ This is usually caused by a hazard outside the building like a power line that’s been knocked down. One of the first steps is to secure all entrances and lock them for less of a chance of possible crime. When this happens, classes are to go on as usual, and the announcements will instruct on what to do next. If you are outside, go into the building as soon as possible.

A Hold-In-Place, that many at Kaneland are now more familiar with is simply staying in the classroom. A Hold-In-Place is usually for emergencies for medical reasons, a pipe break, and any other non-life threatening issues. Teachers lock classroom doors and do not let anyone in or out of the room. Since this isn’t life-threatening, teachers can carry on with class like normal. By locking students and teachers in classrooms, it makes a clearer sign of possible intruders or evidence. If outside, remain outside away from the building.

In a possibly more life-threatening situation like an unauthorized visitor or intruder, a student is supposed to immediately tell a staff member if the visitor looks out of place or is not wearing an ID badge. The staff member is supposed to greet the stranger and ask what they’re doing at school. If the visitor does not have a pass, the staff member will escort them to the main office to get a pass. If the visitor seems threatening, the staff member will walk away and notify security. From there the security will question where and when the person was last seen.

When a live threat like a shooter is taking place occupants are supposed to follow ALICE protocol. Standing for alert, inform, evacuate, lockdown and barricade, and counter, the word ALICE sets a rule of instructions. With this system, it allows administration more control over the situation.

The first two steps are alert and inform. With these steps students and staff are instructed to get the information out that there is a threat in the school. After alerting others, evacuation will take place if it is safe to do so in the area. If you are unable to run, hide in a room and barricade the door, making it as hard as you can for anyone to come in. If confronted by the shooter, deploy countermeasures and defend yourself by throwing anything near.

In any of these situations, if the fire alarm goes off get outside like you would for a normal fire evacuation.