Amherst school officials hold active shooter training, update policies

Teachers got hands-on training today in Amherst County

AMHERST COUNTY, Va. – Amherst County Public Schools welcomed teachers back Monday for the 2022-2023 school year with an active shooter training.

After the tragedy in Uvalde, a lot of school leaders reflected on their policies and procedures, and Superintendent Dr. William Wells said he knew he needed to do something.

“Hopefully, we never use any of this,” said Wells. “The likelihood is low, but if something does happen you need to have a plan in place and be able to execute it.”

“The bad thing is when I read that report I said, ‘Well, we have the same protocols in place,’ and we need to make our teachers understand it wasn’t the protocols that failed, it was human error,” said Wells. “Also, we’ve been in a COVID state the last two years, so our focus has been on getting schools open and getting kids in the building. I think some of our safety measures took a backseat to our COVID response.”

Avoiding danger, denying the shooter access, and defending yourself at all costs were the focuses of the training. Trainers also discussed suspicious behaviors to be aware of, as well as police response during a worst-case scenario.

The school’s administration put other practices and policies in place but requested that those remain private.

Amherst County students will return to the classroom on August 17.

About the Author:

McKinley Strother joined the WSLS 10 News team in June 2020. He anchors 10 News at 6 and 11 on Saturdays and Sundays and you'll also catch him reporting during the week.