Roxbury Township Public Schools recently adopted a new strategy for lockdown procedures known as the ALICE plan. ALICE is an acronym for Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, and Evacuate.
Roxbury Schools Superintendent Loretta Radulic said, “The philosophy known as ALICE is to use technology and information in a way so that staff and students can make informed decisions in a crisis. ALICE is a proactive approach that increases the chances of survival in a crisis.”
Prior to ALICE, the district followed the lockdown method which has been in place since 2000. This method alone is no longer acceptable per the New Jersey Department of Education.
Two presentations were held last month for staff and parents regarding the ALICE training.
An in-service day held Mon., Oct. 10, was the first presentation to the full district staff. This full-day training seminar was split into two sections. The morning presentation included information by James Simonetti, the district’s new director of security along with members from the Roxbury Police Department. They presented statistics, information, as well as 9-1-1 real-life examples from Sandy Hook and Columbine. Different staged scenarios played out during this time so participants could see the new procedures in action in comparison to the old lockdown method.
After a question portion from faculty, the staff members reported back to their home schools to practice the new drills based on the different methods of ALICE. Members of the Roxbury Police Department were also present at the individual schools to help roll out this new initiative.
In an effort to help with additional staff training, Moira Fulton and Kathleen Scerra, two students from Roxbury High School’s Gaelvision videotaped the training.
An evening presentation was presented later that week to the parents and guardians by Simonetti at Roxbury High School. A slideshow was shared featuring information regarding ALICE, the statistics, and part of the Columbine Library 9-1-1 call, which can be found at www.roxbury.org. The floor was then opened up to parent questions, comments and concerns.
Feedback from parents and guardians is requested as the district works towards fully implementing the ALICE protocols in each of the seven schools. This rollout of new procedures and protocols will be implemented in small increments throughout the year.
Any parent interested in serving as a parent liaison on Roxbury School’s Security Committee, can contact Simonetti at firstname.lastname@example.org or Radulic at email@example.com.
“Ultimately, ALICE is a mindset that will lead us to becoming more prepared, more informed, and more empowered in the event of a crisis. It is a program that many organizations have adopted, including ours,” said Radulic.