The Petersburg School Board has hired Marcus Hom of Dark Horse Defense to improve the school district’s Crisis Response Plan.
Hom is the manager and lead instructor for Dark Horse Defense. He has experience in law enforcement and security, working as a Federal Law Enforcement Officer, Reserve Municipal Police Officer and Private Security officer. Hom also holds instructor certifications from both the National Rifle Association and the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, FLETC.
Petersburg Schools Superintendent Rob Thomason stated that “With the shocking and tragic occurrence in the school in Connecticut, we took a second look at the crisis response plan that Petersburg has in place.”
Hom has worked with Petersburg in the past regarding gun safety.
“Marcus will put together an emergency action plan for us and work with us closely for the next three months,” Thomason said. “He will also provide training to the staff. We as educators have no real expertise in this area and we want to make sure this is done right.”
This new plan has been in the work just for the past couple of weeks.
“The scope of this project will entail the physical security of the school first,” Hom stated. “There will also be new policies that will go into effect and make sure we can get all of the staff trained in emergency situations.”
According to Board Policy 6114(a), the crisis response plan for each school must follow the Incident Command System, ICS; preassign ICS roles and train selected individuals; include a communication plan; include protocols for responding to immediate physical harm of students, faculty, or staff and to traumatic events, including the period after the events have concluded; include disaster and emergency procedures to respond to earthquakes, fire, flood, explosions, or other events or conditions in which death or serious injury is likely; include crisis procedures for safe entrance to and exit from the school by students, parents, and employees including an evacuation and lock down plan; and include policies for enforcing school discipline and maintaining a safe and orderly environment during the crisis.
“We want this new plan to be role based rather than personnel based,” Hom stated. “It is best for people in all areas to be aware of what their roles are in any given situation.”
Hom will work closely with the board for the upcoming months to finalize and introduce the new plan to the school district.