ALICE Active Shooter Training
Upper Perk, like every district in the nation, has been spending a lot of time examining school safety and security recently. This nationwide conversation was renewed after the February 2018 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida, but Upper Perk has made investments to help ensure a secure, nurturing learning environment for much longer.
As part of these ongoing discussions, the district held a number of events on school safety and security during winter/spring 2018. These included a March 19 safety forum hosted with community partners and Informational Parent Meetings on ALICE Active Shooter Training.
The district is continuing our rollout of ALICE active shooter training, which started with our staff over the course of a year, and progressed to the parent training in April 2018. The next step is to roll out the ALICE training to all students during May 2018. The training will be presented in an age-appropriate manner by the end of the 2017-2018 school year.
Throughout May, principals at each of the buildings will meet with groups of students to deliver information about ALICE. At the elementary level, the principals will read a book to small groups of students to relay the information in an age-appropriate fashion. At the secondary level, grade-level meetings will be held to discuss ALICE. During the 2018-2019 school year, training will continue, with one ALICE-related drill held per semester at each building.
ALICE (which stands for alert, lockdown, inform, counter, evacuate), is a training method that teaches techniques that can reduce injuries and casualties in the event of an active shooter. ALICE differs from the lockdown/shelter-in-place approach previously used by many districts, including UPSD. ALICE has been incorporated into our district multihazard emergency operations plan. While Upper Perk was one of the early adopters of ALICE in Montgomery County schools, it is now the method of training and response for all schools in the county.
ALICE empowers staff and students to make informed decisions about how to best ensure their own safety during an active shooter event, especially before authorities arrive on the scene or when they are not immediately available. More on ALICE can be found at ALICEtraining.com.
UPSD places the highest priority on keeping our students and staff safe. While we hope that our community never has to utilize this training, it is important for for us to be prepared should an unspeakable event, such as the shooting in Florida, take place in one of our schools.
Below you will find additional resources on ALICE, including a slideshow and video. Please note that these resources contain serious, and at times, graphic material related to school shootings.