Teachers are suing police departments for traumatizing active shooter drills

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2020/08/27/teachers-are-suing-police-depa.html


I am not even going to try to be generous. When we have police departments with policies against hiring people who are too intelligent or too educated, and when we have an overtly anti-intellectual culture in general, is it really surprising that uniformed loser-bullies are whipping up on the symbols of everything they imagine to be oppressive?

And while I’m being cranky, hell, K-12 education (and honestly a lot of what comes after too) is itself based on a carceral pedagogy demanding ridiculous displays of obedience and allowing the exercise of petty authority.

Bullies all the way down.

Why, yes, I am angry. Why do you ask?

[Edit: small edits for grammar]


I can attest that even without the fake blood and gore, being anywhere near one of these is traumatizing.

A few years ago, the office next door had an active shooter drill and neglected to tell anyone. The whole complex sheltered in place as helicopters, armed teams, and military vehicles raced around while we hid in locked offices listening to frantic radio reports of our imminent demise. The debacle ended up all over the news because they scared the crap out of hundreds of people who are still twitchy recalling it. Thankfully, there hasnt been another drill since.


participants being harmed is a common thread in active shooter drills: https://www.masslive.com/news/2019/01/lawsuit-claims-woman-bled-from-ear-lost-hearing-after-springfield-police-captain-fired-gun-near-her-head-during-active-shooter-drill.html


Apropos since those are generally the same kinds of people who carry out the real shootings.


Seriously, I know our UK government is fucking up our education system right now, but this shit being a ‘normal’ part of a kid’s schooling is incomprehensible, pointless and beyond stupid.


This country is so fucked.


One of the few upsides of the pandemic is that I don’t have to explain to anyone why I’m not sending my child to school on active shooter drill day.


“White County, Indiana”
That’s a little on the nose isn’t it?


Seriously? Holy shit!


The degree of simulation here seems insane. As does the fact that this is a BILLION dollar a year industry.
Are fire drills now including blown in smoke and the smell of burnt flesh? Back in my day, we just practiced what we’d do and how to be safe. Why is it so different for active shooter scenarios?

Also, this from a linked article about the company:

The company insists that simply locking down a classroom and waiting for help — a “passive” response — will increase your chances of dying.

So…are they admitting that we can’t count on the police to keep school kids safe? That we’re better off fending for ourselves? Okay, then.


It really says something that the solution to a bunch of people shooting up schools is not to do anything about the methods those people use to get guns, or the proliferation of guns, or idiotic gun culture in general, but just to shrug, assume shootings are gonna happen, so we might as well “train” people to survive them, in the most brutal and sadistic way possible.



It’s as if the goal is to instill terror in the kids. I feel like we had a word for that which I don’t recall.

On the other hand, we do fire drills and kids are orders of magnitude more likely to experience an active shooter than a dangerous school fire. Which is a pretty sad state of affairs completely independent of these drills.


Was it…could the word you’re searching for be “terrorism”? /s


This speaks to the essense of what’s different about conservatives versus liberals: Red state folk are deeply invested in how dangerous the world is and can be: If preparing themselves for that danger makes the world somewhat more dangerous, then that just feeds the same narrative, no soul searching required.

It’s creepy as hell that so many school districts have invested so heavily into a deeply conservative practice, without even the pretense of equal time for a more liberal perspective .(gun control, anyone?)


During the cold war, children were terrorized by nuclear bomb drills. They were taught to hide under their desks as though that would matter in a nuclear blast. The real point was to instill fear of the Commies that could be used to raise a generation of Real AmericansTM.

These drills serve the same purpose. Fear-based propaganda to get children to grow up believing in and striving to be Good Guys with Guns (military, cop, etc.)


Your school system tells you what day it will be?!? Two years ago my son’s school made it the same day as picture day (without informing parents) - my son cut his head open trying to duck for cover. His fresh head wound is prominent in that year’s photo. :face_with_symbols_over_mouth:

@ejeffrey: As it happens, later that same school year, a kid set the boy’s room next to the cafeteria on fire. Yet, after 6 years of public schooling, no active shooters. Your math is hyperbolic, at best - the vast majority of kids will never experience either disaster.


Remember that every one of those dollars is a subsidy.


Ugh. And a dollar not going to actual education or school supplies


The union got them to require notification. After notification the parents managed to fight it down to a minimal drill. It seems like only the administration wants the drills at all. They still won’t excuse absences, but I’m happy to tell them that my child is ill and will remain so as long as the drills last.

Yes and no. There are over 5000 fire calls a year to schools, but very few fatalities. The big difference is that we took all the other reasonable steps first and the drills actually change outcomes. One of the lovely sites you can visit in Cleveland is the memorial for a large school fire and almost any tour guide showing it discusses the changes to school construction it inspired.