Corpus Christi ISD employees have until the end of March to complete an online course on active shooter training, Corpus Christi ISD chief of police Kirby Warnke said.
The training covers facts about school shootings, understanding how to reduce the likelihood of active shooter situations, learning evidence-based methods to improve the odds of survival during an active shooter event, and a list actions to take in the event of an active shooter situation.
Warnke said the training, which is part of the SafeSchools Training program suite created by Vector Solutions, is supplementary to a manual for staff and classroom curriculum on crises at schools. The manual was issued after the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in 2012.
The Corpus Christi ISD police department has undergone active shooter training for more than a decade. The district is among the about 150 school districts in the state that has a police department.
One of the reasons the district recently took on SafeSchools Training is to provide employees with factual data on active shooter situations in school settings, Warnke said.
“We’re firm believers in training,” he said. “(The SafeSchools training) helps dispel some myths about school shootings.”
Homicide is the second leading cause of youth ages 5 to18, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s School-Associated Violent Death Study of deaths between 1992 and 2010.
Data from the study indicates that between 1 percent and 2 percent of these deaths happen on school grounds or on the way to or from school.
The leading cause of death for children ages 1 to 14 are accidents, or unintentional injuries, according to data published by the CDC. The second leading cause of death for youth ages 15-19 is suicide, according to data published by the CDC.
A 2014 study conducted by the Department of Justice indicates there were 160 active shooter incidents in the U.S. between 2000 and 2013. Thirty-nine of those active shooter incidents, or 24 percent of them, took place in an educational environment, according to the study.
Twenty-seven of the 160 active shooter incidents took place at pre-K to12 schools, including two school board meetings.
Warnke said the district is compliant with recommendations issued to school districts by Gov. Greg Abbott but is hoping to “exceed state requirements.”
For example, schools are required to conduct three emergency response drills per school year.
“We’re doubling it next year to six drills,” Warnke said.
Abbott’s order was issued in response to the massacre at a high school in Parkland, Florida.
It states school safety audits required by state law must be completed and confirmation of thee audits’ completion must also be filed with the Texas School Safety Center.
Abbott ordered the Texas Education Agency to publish a list of school districts that have not completed their audits.
Warnke said Corpus Christi ISD will not be one of them.