Active shooter response: defensive tactics and tactical decision-making for elementary school teachers and staff
Whitney, John A., IV
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This study analyzes characteristics of Run, Hide, Fight and defensive tactics and tactical-based decision-making tools that can be modified and applied to enhance depth and breadth of preparedness. Specifically, the research focuses on law enforcement and military tactics and tactical decision-making tools that could be taught to teachers and school staff for use in elementary school settings. Research sources include government operation manuals as well as literature from experts in the fields of defensive tactics and tactical decision-making. While much of the tactical advice and techniques described may seem intimidating to the non-military or non-law-enforcement professional, they are not. The tactics provide basic guidance in mindset, movement, and self-protection strategies that have the potential of improving the likelihood of survival of students, faculty, and staff alike. Findings from the research are categorized as pre-action (mental preparation and situational awareness), action (defensive tactics and tactical decision-making techniques), and re-action (ongoing situational awareness, action analysis and modification). Additionally, the findings support the following recommendations: provide training to teachers and school staff on options-based responses (including defensive tactics and tactical decision-making), empower teachers to protect students by any means necessary, and establish reconnection procedures in the event of an incident.
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