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Teachers participate in active shooter scenario in Baldwinsville

Teachers in the Baldwinsville Central School District participated in an active shooter scenario at Baker High School last week, to learn more on how to respond to a school shooting. Baldwinsville teachers have been training for years, but recent mass shootings, like the latest in Thousand Oaks, California, make it all the more timely.

In the scenario, the shooter talks a security person into letting him into the school, saying he is an old student who wants to see his friends. He starts shooting students, tries to get into the cafeteria but its locked, before going upstairs and stalking the hallways.

Nanette Downie with Armoured One, the company formed after the Sandy Hook school shooting that puts on the training, said the scenario is intense and it tests teachers to react under pressure.  

“And what we train our teachers carries over into anywhere, it’s universal," Downie said. "It applies to their school directly but the things they learn, they can take with them anywhere they are and possibly, save more lives.”

Lindsey Kregel is a student-teacher at the high school who went through the training.

“It was nerve-racking," Kregel said. "I’ve never experienced one before. As a student now flipping it being a teacher, it’s a cool setting to see how much we didn’t know behind the scenes.”

Teachers locked classroom doors and equipped students, in the training, with anything they could use as a weapon.

Baldwinsville schools Superintendent Matt McDonald said while it is unfortunate the training is necessary, he said you can’t put a price tag on the health and safety of students and staff.

Tom Magnarelli is a reporter covering the central New York and Syracuse area. He joined WRVO as a freelance reporter in 2012 while a student at Syracuse University and was hired full time in 2015. He has reported extensively on politics, education, arts and culture and other issues around central New York.