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Clarkston Community School District

From Superintendent Ryan: School Safety Update

From Superintendent Ryan: School Safety Update

Dear Friends of Clarkston Community Schools,

Last spring, our district made an important investment in our commitment to school safety and security when we partnered with The ALICE Training Institute to provide our students and staff with the gold standard of crisis response training. The ALICE protocol empowers students with proactive, options-based strategies ("Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, Evacuate") and increases survivability of a potential mass-casualty incident.

This Monday, January 21 (no school for students in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day), all district staff will be engaging in ALICE simulation trainings facilitated by the Oakland County Sheriff's Office SWAT Team in partnership with our School Safety Task Force. Administrators from each of our schools have participated in a full day of "train-the-trainer" education, and will also be leading Monday's training. Upon completion of this important "real-world" exercise in all buildings, Clarkston Community Schools will become an ALICE-certified organization.

This is a process we have been working on since last spring, when we introduced all staff to the training. They completed an online training module and received initial training from an ALICE instructor, along with basic first-aid training from St. Joseph Mercy Oakland to prevent life-threatening wounds.

We continued our partnership with St. Joseph Mercy Oakland with mandatory all-staff "Stop the Bleed" training in the fall, in which staff members received focused hands-on training on how to intervene before EMS arrives to the scene, stop blood loss, and increase the likelihood of survival for the injured. Each classroom will also be equipped with life-saving first aid supplies that our staff has been trained to use.

The final and ongoing step of our ALICE training is, of course, to train our students. Our training will be age-appropriate and customized to each building's layout and location. Your principal will be communicating with you further on when and how this training will be conducted in your child's school.

As a parent myself, I understand how unsettling it can be to consider the circumstances that might necessitate the use of this training. Please know that our intention is not to spark fear or panic, but to best prepare and equip our school community with every tool possible to stay safe.

Please don't hesitate to reach out if you have questions or concerns regarding our school safety plans.

Sincerely,

Shawn Ryan
Superintendent of Schools