Tuesday, May 18, 2010

School Pranks Gone Awry...The Time of Year for Student Bad Judgment

May 16, 2010

I recently read two news articles:


Incident: 20 Ohio high school students broke (breaking and entering) into the local high school and started ransacking (throwing books: destruction of private property) the school. Many were dressed in black and did this at night. The students were arrested and face felony charges. The students said it was "just a end of the year prank" and some of the parents said it is a tradition and police are blowing the situation out of proportion. School district plans disciplinary action.


Teenagers brought realistic looking pellet rifles into an elementary school on a Friday causing someone to call 911 resulting in a police response and arrests. 9 students were arrested (possessing dangerous weapons on school grounds) and 7 Airsoft Guns were confiscated. While no one was injured, the police received multiple calls about armed individuals at the school at 4 pm during a time where there were after school activities

Commentary on the Two Stories: Breaking into school and bringing anything that looks like a weapon (especially assault weapons) are not pranks or one of those "aw, kids will be kids" responses. For the Ohio students, they have been arrested and will probably be suspended, and those seniors will probably not graduate with their class. Nothing funny about that for the students and their parents, but well deserved. For the elementary students who brought replica (Airsoft) assault weapons into their school they are lucky they were not shot. The police were well withing their rights to call for an Active Shooter response to armed individuals in a school. This response is focused on all officers responding to immediately eliminate the threats since most school shooting are over in the first 5 to 10 minutes. School Shooting situations require an immediate and agressive tactical response to save innocent lives if possible. Had officers filled and flodded those hallways from multiple directions looking for multiple shooters and ran into a kid with an "assault rifle" pointing in their direction there could / would have been a lethal engagement resulting in a student's death. That is a closer call than many may realize, stupidity can kill just like complacency. A serious example needs to be set for those students.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Sudden Dangerous Weather Puts High School Sports Events at Risk

Bad Weather can occur at any time. Remember lightening kills and if you can see it, it is in range to kill you. In Connecticut, each school is suppose to have a NOAA Emergency Weather Radio.

Questions to ask:
  • Does your school have these radios?
  • Where is the radio and Who monitors the radio?
  • Does someone monitor it after school when you have outdoor extracurricular activities?
  • What is the procedures for dangerous weather? Who makes the call? Who is notified?

On May 5, 2010 in Northwest Connecticut, a burst of violent weather generated winds and thunderstorms that severely impacted this region. Trees and power lines were knocked down and power was lost in many areas.  In New Hartford, heavy winds affected a high school (Lewis S. Mills H.S.) crew team event causing a number of crew boats to be blown beyond the team rescue boat. A few boats were capsized. The water temperature was cold so based on safety protocols, nine members were transported for a nearby hospital for hypothermia evaluation and released without incident.  Thomaston High School had to cancel a track and field meet due to these sudden bad weather which included high winds and lightning.

Sudden Dangerous Weather should be of an Incident Action Plan (IAP) within your school's Safety Plan.