Keeping our children safe; local law enforcement take part in active threat training

Published 9:45 am Saturday, October 1, 2022

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On Sept. 21, the Valley Police Department along with School Resource Officers and the Chambers County Multi-Jurisdiction SWAT Team held an Active Threat Training for administrators and teachers at Valley High and Fairfax Elementary School.

At the request of the Chambers County School System, Sergeant Lorenzo Harris and Sergeant Terry Daniel held a presentation on their procedures for responding to a potential threat. They also reviewed the schools’ policies and examined them for areas of improvement.

“The recent events throughout our country have divided a lot of people, and I wanted to make an effort to come together to work with different agencies along with the school system,” Harris said. “So that in a time of crisis, we can better work together to come up with solutions to keep our children and the general public safe.”

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Officers then put the administration and teachers through an active threat drill, in which they were put in a stressful circumstance and had to follow their procedure. The drill gave them hands-on practice to refer to in the event of a crisis. 

According to Harris, the goal of the training was to build confidence and better preparation for cooperation between the school system, the staff and the local law enforcement agencies. 

“It was really an effort to see how the staff would handle things and see what needs to be improved with their policies and protocols,” Harris said. “Just making sure that we provide our children and our schools with the best service that we can.”

Several officers from around Chambers County including the schools’ school resource officers and multiple members of the Chambers County Multi-Jurisdiction SWAT Team participated in the training. 

The Chambers County Multi-Jurisdiction Swat Team is made up of officers and deputies throughout Chambers County. There are officers from Chambers County. Sheriff’s Office, Lanett Police Department, Valley Police Department and LaFayette Police Department.

Each officer has to complete a week of specialized training to get certified through the state of Alabama SWAT operators. There are additional requirements within their agencies and the team as well.

Harris said all school systems should get familiar with their SROs and their local law enforcement agencies. 

He said schools should develop better communication with their local law agencies and ask them to send someone out to review protocol with them. Schools should also keep their own policies up to date. 

“Always work toward a brighter future and have better communication,” Harris said. “I’m glad we were able to work with everybody. Hopefully, we can continue to do so in the future.”