MOUNT CARMEL — St. Mary's Catholic School staff and local police spent Monday afternoon having a school crisis plan training exercise which included an active shooter drill at the school.
Illinois State Police District 19, Wabash County Sheriff's Department and the Mount Carmel Police Department took part in the training exercise with school staff employees.
According to Mark Zimmerman with the Illinois State Police, training consisted of a presentation made to the St. Mary's Faculty and Staff followed by several crisis scenarios. The presentation topics included the potential dangers and issues being seen in schools, identification of possible scenarios that would constitute a need to activate the crisis plan, the importance of developing and practicing the crisis plan, lock-down and evacuation procedures and a brief review of the schools crisis plan.
Following the presentation, the faculty and staff participated in several different violent active shooter scenarios inside the school where role players were utilized. The school staff were required to activate the crisis plan when confronted with the different scenarios.
After contacting 911, officers from the Wabash County Sheriff's Department and Mount Carmel Police Department were dispatched to the school. Officers then entered the school and confronted the threat which was being played out in the scenario.
During each drill, the school staff were observed by law enforcement officers and trainers to see of the crisis plan was being implemented in the correct way. Following the scenarios, law enforcement officers and school staff met and discussed their observations, concerns or issues that arose during the drills.
The same training took place at Mount Carmel Elementary School this past Friday. In a press released issued by Mount Carmel Police Department Detective Sgt. Ryan Turner said, "The Mount Carmel Police Department and the Wabash County Sheriff's Department are dedicated to the safety of our children. Together with the Illinois State Police, we are continuously looking for ways to better protect our school and respond to a school shooting should one occur in our area. We are currently looking at training into the next school year, and we are hoping to include other emergency service to better our response."