Policing Schools

By: Meghan Dwyer Email
By: Meghan Dwyer Email

ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- Rockford Police say they started training for school shootings after Columbine, but they don't currently have officers stationed in elementary schools.

Officers go through a rigorous rapid response training each year, which teaches them how to deal with school shootings, but those techniques might not be able to protect students, especially when shootings happen in an instant.

Rockford Public Schools have 13 police officers stationed in the schools, one for each high school and rotating officers for the middle schools, but they don't have anyone permanently stationed in elementary schools.
They do carry their guns in the schools, but they say it's impossible to predict how long it would take multiple officers to arrive on scene during a mass shooting.

"We've all had training in immediate action type response, uh we also do updated training on that as well, and our use of force simulator depicts those types of situations,” said Sgt. Michale Dalke with the Rockford Police.

Rockford Police did sit down last week with Fred Diehl, who is in charge of security in the schools. They say they reviewed lockdown procedures and went over safety plans, but police are leaving it to individual schools to talk to their students and faculty.

In Rockford Public Schools, Andy Frain Services provides private security, and they have about 50 guards who work in the schools. Once a year, Rockford Police also do a school shooting training in one of the school buildings.


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