City, parish and school officials met Tuesday at the Bastrop City Hall to discuss how the students and faculty of Morehouse Parish schools could better protect themselves against danger.
Superintendent Dr. George Noflin Jr. discussed the importance of having safety drills. He said the students and faculty at all schools needed to practice drills more often so that they could know the difference between a fire drill and a tornado drill.
“When I was a principal, we had drills twice a year, one each semester,” Noflin said. “I really want to emphasize the importance of these drills and begin having them four times year, two a semester.”
Mayor Betty Alford-Olive posed the question, “What measures will be taken if a gunman enters one of our schools?”
“I don't know for sure what will happen, but I can tell you what is suppose to happen,” he said. “It starts with the children.”
Noflin said children are usually predictable and “like to talk.”
“When a child brags to other children that he has a gun, the child being told should then tell an adult,” Noflin said.
Chief Downey Black and MPSO chief criminal deputy Brian Shoemaker discussed their course of action if faced with a gunman on campus.
“We're trained to go straight to the gunman and do whatever we have to to take him into custody or take him out; whatever we have to do in order to keep everyone safe.”
Black said their response time would be two minutes. He said they were training with the sheriff's office to better work together in an emergency situation.
Shoemaker requested blueprints to all the schools for them to put on their laptops and Noflin said he would get them immediately.
“We'll do whatever we have to in order to provide for the safety of our children,” he said.