Teresa Stewart photo
Officer Ray Sawyer and EVFD April Bath rush injured student Izaah Ealey to triage.

By Teresa Stewart

The Ely Times

School shootings are becoming all to common and we have to find ways to keep students safe and especially while they are in school.

The day after the one month anniversary of the Douglas High School shooting in Florida when 17 students and teachers were gunned down, the David E. Norman PTO, school board members and faculty, along with White Pine Search and Rescue, the White Pine Sheriffs office, City of Ely EMT’s and Fire Department, teamed up to participate in an active assailant drill at the David E. Norman grade school.

Pete Mangum, who has sat on the school board for a number of years, has been working with Bill Reynolds, the co-founder of CrisisGo., which has an app that teachers, faculty and first responders can download on their phone and communicate in a crisis situation.

They can look at maps of school, message each other like texting and give teachers tips to keep students safe during a lockdown or evacuation.

David E. Norman is one of the first schools in Nevada to test out this app that has the potential to change the outcome in an emergency situation.

In this drill, the situation was a shooter on the playground and “injured students” were placed in various places around the school.

When the assailant was apprehended and on his way to the sheriffs office, he admitted there was a bomb left on the property, prompting an evacuation.

During this active assailant drill, teachers, faculty and first responders had a chance to test out the app and practice what they will do in case of an emergency.

Officers cleared the building so search and rescue could come in and retrieve the injured students while teachers evacuated their classes to a safe location.

Parents were on hand to check their children out of school, so faculty to could practice checking the children out once they were all safe and accounted for.

The training was planned by the WPCSD’s Safety, Wellness, Facilities and Transportation (SWFT) committee, which is composed of staff, administration, law enforcement, fire, emergency, and other community partners (SWFT committee). The SWFT committee will review the drill, the procedures, and the performance of the staff and students at next Monday’s meeting in the board room at 5 p.m. This is a public meeting.

To help bring ideas to the table on how to keep our schools safe, please visit the White Pine County School district page and check out the agenda to attend the meetings. You can see the page at whitepine.k12.nv.us