North Texas Collegiate Academy, a charter school with Denton, Lewisville, and Little Elm campuses, has implemented a comprehensive crisis shooter response system called SafeDefend. The system is part technology and part training, and it is designed to help school staff and faculty respond to an active shooter situation.
The SafeDefend system includes a notification system that alerts first responders and devices that help school staff access self-defense tools and equipment. The training component teaches school staff and faculty how to overcome their instincts and respond to an active shooter situation safely and effectively.
Earlier this month, staff and faculty from all three North Texas Collegiate Academy campuses gathered for their annual conference. One day of the convocation was dedicated to SafeDefend training, led by Greg Vecchi, the retired FBI Behavioral Science Unit chief and a longtime hostage negotiator.
Vecchi told teachers that once a school and its classrooms are on lockdown, they will stay locked down for hours. He also said that if teachers see a student or colleague wounded, they should leave them and continue with protocol. Vecchi also explained that once a classroom is locked down, staff members should not open the door to a child stranded in the hallway but instead follow protocol to direct the student to safety. This proved difficult for many teachers to understand.
Teachers also participated in several exercises during the SafeDefend training. In the first exercise, they practiced extending telescopic steel batons and then hitting a mat to experience attacking an active shooter. They also took turns spraying inert practice defensive spray into the face of a training dummy to get used to how pepper spray works.
Lisa Stanley, the superintendent of North Texas Collegiate Academy, said the school implemented the SafeDefend system in response to the Robb Elementary School tragedy.
“Over the last eight months, we were able to find the funding and the training,” Stanley said. “The board made this happen for us. We all feel more prepared for an emergency. We are more prepared now.“
The SafeDefend system is an innovative and groundbreaking solution that has been specifically developed to assist schools in Texas to be better equipped and prepared to deal with the threat of an active shooter. With its advanced features and real-time response capabilities, this system is a vital resource for educational institutions, providing them with cutting-edge technology that can help keep their students and staff safe in any crisis.
Integrating multiple layers of security, such as an alarm system, an intercom, and a panic button, the SafeDefend system offers an unmatched level of protection, ensuring that schools have the tools to respond effectively and swiftly to any emergency. In addition, its user-friendly interface makes it easy for schools to implement and train staff, making it a highly valued investment for any educational institution concerned with safety and security.
Ultimately, the SafeDefend system has the potential to save lives, providing school communities with peace of mind and a better chance of survival during active shooter situations.
The SafeDefend system is one of the most promising safety measures for schools nationwide. With the potential to provide a model for other schools to follow, its effectiveness has been widely recognized by experts in the field. By adopting this system, schools can significantly improve their ability to respond to emergencies and protect their students, faculty, and staff from various threats.
Similar systems have been implemented in several schools nationwide, including elementary, middle, and high schools. Their cutting-edge features include training for staff members, panic buttons, and trauma kits that provide crucial supplies in case of injury, among others. Additionally, the system’s accessibility and ease of use make it ideal for schools of all sizes and levels, which helps to ensure that schools have the necessary resources to stay safe. The widespread adoption of such systems could make schools safer for learning and growing.
As always, be safe and be prepared.