In light of the school shooting in Florida, 23ABC wanted to find out what local schools are doing to protect Kern County's students.
Here are the responses we've received:
Kern County Superintendent of Schools (KCSOS)
Kern County Superintendent of Schools also declined to go on camera, but Rob Meszaros issued this statement:
"Policy and procedure around safety, training, emergency drills, etc., is set at the district level. So, if you are after specifics for a particular school or district, that information needs to come from that school/district.
Per California Education Code all schools and/or districts are required by law to have a safe school plan in place and be reviewed and updated annually by March 1. School districts with fewer than 2501 students are required to have a district-wide plan with districts with more than 2501 students are required to have a specific plan at each school campus.There are links to several resources on the California Department of Education that will help, including a checklist of what should be in a safe school plan."
Kern High School District (KHSD):
Lisa Krch said KHSD declined to go on camera, but instead issued us this statement:
"The Kern High School District takes school emergency planning and safety very seriously. The safety of our students and staff is our top priority. Every school has a comprehensive school safety plan, and all of our schools routinely practice lockdowns, fire drills, and earthquake drills at the start of both semesters.KHSD staff attend "Active Shooter" trainings during pre-school in-service meetings in August and during the mid-year in-service day in January."
Bakersfield City School District (BCSD):
Assistant Superintendent of Business Steve McClain said the district is prepared to respond if an emergency should happened. When asked about details of the active shooter training in place McClain responded in part by saying:
"We don't go into details about our plans we keep that internal but you know were ready for whatever type of situation comes up."
McFarland Unified School District:
"McFarland USD has implemented the county-approved training called Permission to Live. This training is scheduled for March 8th at 8:00 a.m. and has taken center stage in light of the recent school shooting tragedies."
California State University of Bakersfield (CSUB):
CSUB Chief Williamson of University Police said in an on camera interview when 23ABC asked if students receive active shooter training:
"Right now we do it by a voluntary basis and hopefully people that have that interest will take us up on that."
Standard School District:
Paul Meyers, Standard School District Superintendent gave this statement:
"Standard School District does not have an active shooter training for students or teachers, but we do have a School Resource Officer (SRO - Kern Co Sheriff) who has received active shooter training. Active shooter is one of the scenarios discussed with staff and students during school safety planning, and lock down drills are conducted periodically and reviewed by our SRO."
El Tejon Unified School District:
Rodney Wallace with El Tejon Unified School District said the district holds intruder drills.
"We have drills at least once a semester."
Panama-Buena Vista School District:
Kevin Silberberg, Panama-Buena Vista School District Superintendent gave this statement:
"We have done training for staff. The training includes concepts of Run Hide Fight. This involves how to protect students and yourself. We have run live simulations and review this information yearly as part of our district wide school safety program.
We do not train students as this would lead to more fear and anxiety about school."
Norris School District:
Dan Weirather, Director of Physical Services gave this statement:
"Adults even become very emotionally upset during a drill so it's not really appropriate for a young child to be put in that type of situation and you don't want to be training the person that could be a potential attacker to your school with your methods. So the kids are typically taught to follow teacher directives, which they are taught from the first day of school. They spend the first whole week during those procedures."
Rio Bravo-Greeley Union School District:
Jennifer Hedge, Rio Bravo-Greeley Union School District Superintendent gave this statement:
"Our staff was trained during the 16-17 school year for an active shooter situation. The procedure we were trained on was the run, hide, fight process. Someone will get on loud speaker and identify the whereabouts of the active shooter. Staff knows if the location is near or far from their classroom and will make a determination to run (shooter far away) hide (shooter near their room), or flight (shooter in/trying to enter their classroom). Staff spoke to students regarding this situation as well. We are looking into an additional training for this year."