School Shooter Drills now mandatory in Illinois - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

School Shooter Drills now mandatory in Illinois

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MENDON, Ill. (WGEM) -

It's part of the world we now live in. Illinois schools are now required to conduct active shooter drills.

It's a new law signed by Governor Quinn in response to the Newtown tragedy last December.

The images of that December day still shock us - and what happened at Sandy Hook Elementary forever changed the face of school security. Mendon day care owner Bonnie Steinkamp has noticed changes locally in the last few months.

"I think the safeness for our kids has gotten improved a lot and stuff because they have taken us ahead now," she said. 

Now the state of Illinois is taking it a step further - mandating active shooter trainings for all schools - like this one that Quincy Police conducted at Baldwin last year. Unity superintendent Brian Kurz says they're already a step ahead of the game.

"We have live shooter drills, we have drills locking down the building and dealing with hostage situations, and all those things. In Unit Four the past few years we've even had those drills involving some of the kids at the middle school and the high school," he said.

He says - because of tragedies like Newtown - the kids take the drill seriously.

"Middle school and high school kids are aware that these things have happened, so involving them in those practices and routines, letting them know that we're doing these things to take care of and protect them is meaningful." 

Adams County Sheriff Brent Fischer says these trainings are good practice for his deputies too.

"Throughout the scenario we throw out a few curveballs, just to keep everybody on their toes, because you never know how things will go. We don't know if we can stop everything, but we hope that we can minimize the damage that could be done in some situations," he said.

The new law takes effect immediately. 

 


 

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