STREETSBORO, OHIO, August 16, 2022
Nearly three (3) dozen individuals came together for an active threat tabletop exercise in Streetsboro recently as students prepare to head back into their classrooms.
Representatives from the Streetsboro School District, and Streetsboro’s Police, Fire, and Service Departments actively participated in the exercise, held on August 10th at Streetsboro High School.
Led by the Portage County Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, the exercise began with a discussion on the Portage County Active Threat Hostile Event Response (ASHER) Plan.
That was immediately followed by an interactive tabletop exercise involving an active shooter situation at a Streetsboro school building. The training lasted nearly four (4) hours.
“I appreciate our administrative team being included in such a valuable exercise”, said Streetsboro Schools Superintendent Michael Daulbaugh, who added: “Being at the table with our Fire Department, Police Department and Service Department gave my team valuable insight into how we need to work together as a team in the event of a crisis. I am confident our team will continue to improve due to what we learned in this training.”
Streetsboro Police Chief Patricia Wain noted: “This was a great opportunity to put the community stakeholders in one room during the training exercise. While we hope to never have to use the training, it is important that each individual group understands their responsibilities and how the team, as a whole, will work together. We appreciate the opportunity to work with everyone to benefit the safety of our children.”
Streetsboro Fire Chief Robert Reinholz added: “This is something that we never want to happen, but if it does, we will be prepared”. Streetsboro Mayor Glenn Broska, who also attended the training, is equally satisfied, stating: “I am glad that everyone is being proactive. This training will help ensure that we will all be working from a united response plan should it ever be needed”.
During the exercise, participants not only had to discuss, but also show what they would do when confronted with such an event. Streetsboro safety forces conduct routine training on active threat situations to keep skills sharp and review processes for continued improvement.
At the conclusion of the tabletop exercise, Ryan Shackelford, Director of the Portage County Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management said, “Streetsboro is a very prepared community.”
The recent training will count as continuing education credit for some emergency responders. The school district may also be able to use this training to meet State of Ohio annual requirements for safety drills.
The school district and municipal safety agencies will soon begin the planning process to conduct a functional exercise, which is the next step in the ongoing training process. This will further validate various emergency plans in a simulated setting, and set the stage for a full-scale exercise in the future.
Photo: Portage County OHS/EM Director Ryan Shackelford interacts with the group during the active threat training held on August 10, 2022.