CLEVELAND (WJW) – A FOX 8 I-Team investigation has exposed gaps in training to protect kids from a gunman at school.
This comes to light with national headlines showing what went wrong during a deadly school shooting rampage in Texas.
The I-Team checked with Cleveland Police and Cleveland Metropolitan Schools to find out what training is going on to keep schools safe from someone with a gun.
We requested records for Cleveland Police active shooter training at schools since 2020.The city sent us records showing some of that training in the police academy and at a closed jail.
But, there’s no records of that training at any schools.
Last month, the Cleveland Metropolitan School District board talked about preparing for emergencies.
However, the I-Team asked for the schools where the full staff had gone through active shooter training in 2021 or 2022.
After six weeks, the district finally sent us a list of schools that had drills. The list showed most of the schools had trained for a threat ‘outside’ the school. The district did not provide specifics of those drills.
The state requires every school each year to do one emergency management test. That can be a test on anything from an active shooter to severe weather. Every school has to do at least one lockdown drill, but the schools only have to have a full-scale drill with safety forces coming in once every three years.
We sat down with Tim Delvecchio from the Ohio Schools Council. He said, “You don’t rise to the occasion, you sink to the lowest level of preparedness.”
Delvecchio said the Ohio Schools Council wants to see more training required in light of the turnover that happens in schools with teachers coming and going and substitutes coming in and out.
“In the aftermath of an incident, that’s the first thing some investigative body is going to be asking about. What is your training record?” he added,
After our inquiry, Cleveland Police issued a statement. Sgt. Jennifer Ciaccia wrote, “The police academy is in the process of planning active shooter training at a school.
RAID is the Cleveland Division of Police version of active shooter training. RAID is an acronym for Rapid, Action, Immediate, Deployment.
Cleveland SWAT developed this training before the term “active shooter” was coined. RAID is continually being revised to keep up with policy, current trends and tactics.”
The school district also said, “(Security) Chief Dodson confirms that the year we spent in remote learning knocked us off our cycle. During the 2022-23 school year, all schools will be asked to have their school safety teams respond to Code Red scenarios in a table-top discussion.”
A table-top discussion involves just that—talk about what to do. It does not involve having first responders rehearse going to the schools.
A state agency oversees this, but that agency does not release records on specific schools concerning what training they did or how.