School lockdown drills help prepare students, staff for emergencies

TIMMINS–On December 2, Timmins Police officers were on hand at R. Ross Beattie Public School in Timmins to assist with a school lockdown drill.

School lockdown drills, required twice a year, are performed to ensure students and staff are aware of safety practices and procedures in case of a potential violent incident at a school.

“This is the first drill that’s taken place this year for our school,” said Jeremy Hall, principal of R. Ross Beattie. “The students did fantastic, they were cooperative, and they took it very seriously.”

Hall added that unlike previous drills, this drill was performed in between classes, at a time the school is generally busier, with students and teachers in the halls.

“I was very impressed with both the staff and students,” said Hall.

During school lockdown drills, students are reminded of practices including staying away from windows and remaining quiet. Once students are secure, police officers walk through the school and clear the classrooms, providing feedback on the success of the drill as well as any potential future problems. Drills follow guidelines established by the Ontario Ministry of Education.

“The average length of these types of events occur within 8 minutes,” explained TPS Sgt. Marty Delich of the Emergency Response Team. “This is why it’s important for teachers, staff and students to be prepared for these situations and have the tools to get the students quickly to safety.”

The Timmins Police Service is committed to partnerships with local schools to ensure the security, safety and preparedness of all students.