District arms teachers with rocks in case of school shooter

Crawford Fourways netball and cricket team at the Montrose Festival

The superintendent of the Blue Mountain School District was explaining his unconventional form of protecting the students in their schools in the event of an active shooter situation: give them rocks. "If an armed intruder attempts to gain entrance to any of our classrooms, they will face a classroom full of students armed with rocks", he says.

A school district in Pennsylvania plans to arm students with buckets of rocks to deter possible school shooters.

A senior who spoke with local ABC affiliate WNEP 16 said, "It matters because it will help protect the schools, anything helps, rocks are better than books and pencils".

He first spoke about the rock buckets in testimony at the Pennsylvania state house in Harrisburg last week.

Luke Mastenbroek in Grade 3 in action
Luke Mastenbroek in Grade 3 in action

Helsel said the idea of equipping classrooms with rocks grew out of his reading of the active-shooter defence programme known as ALICE - Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, Evacuate. "You can throw them very hard and they will create or cause pain, which can distract", said Helsel. Florida even passed a bill to arm some teachers but some think this rock-stoning strategy is primitive. The school also has devices in its doors to help keep them secure, and trains its students on how to barricade doors to help prevent the need for the stones, Helsel said, according to the network.

A widely discussed debate over the last several months has been whether or not teachers should be able to carry and have guns in their classrooms in case a shooter attacks the school.

Despite the critics of Helsel's plan, allegedly parents of the school have been supportive of the measure as some have seen it as a creative way to implement some form of protective measure.

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