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Fauquier law officers conduct ‘active shooter’ drills in schools

Tuesday, Dec. 3 | By Mark Grandstaff | Google+
Fauquier law officers apprehend a simulated school shooter in a training exercise. - Courtesy of Fauquier County Sheriff's Office
The Fauquier County Sheriff’s Office and the Warrenton Police Department recently conducted active shooter response training in Fauquier's public schools.

According to the sheriff's office Facebook page, "the training was conducted jointly over a two-day period at a local school facility and focused on rapid response/active shooter scenarios and coordination of efforts in rescuing victims."

"The purpose of this training is to educate law enforcement officials to take immediate appropriate action in the event of an active shooter situation and to ensure the safety of first responders, students, faculty and others while coordinating rescue efforts for victims," said Lt. James Hartman, spokesman for the Fauquier County Sheriff's Office, in a release.

Since the summer, the school district has worked more closely with law agencies in response to create "threat assessment teams" mandated by new state laws.

Right now, the district follows a model of threat assessment built by the University of Virginia, which gauges threats to student and teacher safety by putting them into context against their background.

University of Virginia Professor Dewey G. Cornell described the model as one that does not “profile” students who stand out from the crowd. It weighs actual threatening words and deeds and looks at their context.

The new law changes the model by calling in law officers close to the beginning of investigating potential threats. Before, they were only involved if the threat had escalated to a high degree.

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