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Active shooter exercise set at Watertown Middle School

Staff Reports • May 25, 2017 at 3:47 PM

Officials from law enforcement agencies, emergency services and Wilson County Schools are preparing to hold a full-scale active shooter exercise Thursday at Watertown Middle School.

The exercise is done periodically to test how well a host of responders, such as police, emergency management, fire, leadership and school resources, can work together to handle and recover from such a tragic incident.

Students will be out of school, so classes will not be affected. Only those involved in the exercise will have access to the area of Watertown Middle School. The training will provide an opportunity for everyone involved to practice their response to be better prepared.

“We hope that this particular exercise will provide every agency involved the necessary training and knowledge to fully prepare for such a tragedy if it ever occurs,” said Sheriff Robert Bryan. “We want to remain proactive in our training efforts due to the overwhelming statistics that are recorded in school shooting related incidents. I have always stood firm on the importance of having a school resource officer in each school, and we are very fortunate in Wilson County to be able to provide that resource for each school; it’s a great testament from our community leaders by always keeping that as a high priority.”

Since January 2016, there have been almost 20 reported school shooting incidents that have happened in the United States. Agencies across the country train continually in preparation for such a tragic incident as it has shown that they can happen anywhere.

The use of school resource officers has proven beneficial across the country as it provides a school with a certified police officer. SROs are trained throughout the year on various school specific issues that may arise and work daily on having a strong rapport with the student body, staff and administration, which is vital in the day-to-day operations of a normal school day.

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