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Safety Information & Training Protocols Letter

Posted on: August 5, 2022

August 2022


Run, Hide, Fight Safety Drill and Information


Dear Students, Families, and Community Members,


As the Superintendent, I struggle with the necessity to share information such as this safety letter.  In recent decades public schools (and other organizations) have found themselves the targets of unspeakable horror and school violence.  It goes against everything we’ve ever held sacred to know that people have come to schools in different areas around the country with intent to harm children and school personnel.  Historically we have shared the belief that certain places are, or should be, off-limits to certain types of violence and destruction.  Unfortunately, we have witnessed too many school violence issues resulting in deaths and injuries and we must be prepared and prepare students.  As a school district, we are planning with safety officials, our safety team, and our school staff to be well trained, with the hope we never have to face a school violence issue. 


Fortunately we’ve never experienced a threat in this community that could not be managed and brought under control through the work and preparedness of our local law enforcement in collaboration with safety officials and school personnel.  For this…we are grateful.


Talawanda was rated the safest school district in Butler County according to the Niche Report which is a nationally and widely used tool to identify the strengths and weaknesses in communities and organizations.  We are very proud of this distinction.


One of our first steps this school year is to retrain our staff and train our new staff as a district.  All buildings will be closed on Monday, August 15, 2022 from 7 AM until 1 PM.  All staff will attend the district wide opening as well as the first safety training session hosted by Oxford Police Department.  Our entire staff will be trained or retrained.  We will follow up with a second safety training on Friday, September 2, 2022 (non student day) at each individual building.

Each school will be notifying the students and families regarding upcoming safety drills called Run, Hide, and Fight.  These drills have not been scheduled yet.  Staff must be trained first.   Parents will be notified when these safety training occurs.  The drills will look different at the elementary level due to developmental awareness and needs of students in this age group.  Our goal is to prepare both our students and staff for anything that we may have to face.


In previous years, the Talawanda School district received ALICE training.  ALICE Training is a copyrighted program that includes similar information as the Run, Hide, and Fight format (Department of Homeland Security) that we will be using.  We wanted to make sure students and families understand this safety drill as noted below:   

RUN and escape, if possible!

  • Getting away from the threat is the top priority.

  • Leave your belongings behind and get away.

  • Help others escape, if possible, but evacuate regardless of whether others agree to follow.

  • Warn and prevent individuals from entering an area where the active shooter may be.

  • Call 911 when you are safe, and describe the shooter, location, and weapons.


HIDE, if escape is not possible!

  • Get out of the shooter’s view and stay very quiet.

  • Silence all electronic devices and make sure they won’t vibrate.

  • Lock and block doors, close blinds, turn off lights.

  • Don’t hide in groups--spread out along walls or hide separately to make it more difficult for the shooter.

  • Try to communicate with the police silently. Use text messages or social media to tag your location.

  • Stay in place until law enforcement gives you the all clear.

  • Your hiding place should be out of the shooter’s view and provide protection if shots are fired in your direction.


FIGHT, as an absolute last resort!

  • Commit to your actions and act as aggressively as possible against the shooter.

  • Recruit others to ambush the shooter with makeshift weapons like chairs, fire extinguishers, scissors, books, etc.

While we believe these acts of violence are very rare, we still need to be prepared.  In conjunction with our local agencies, we have developed safety plans that will not be shared with the public (to prevent a possible intruder from knowing our plans).  We will practice our safety drills such as tornado, fire, rapid evacuation, and this Run, Hide, Fight drill throughout the year.  Due to the sensitivity of this Run, Hide, Fight drill, our buildings will notify you of these upcoming drills.  You may ask your building administrators or SROs additional questions.

We are committed to ensuring that all students and staff stay safe if there is an emergency in and/or around our schools. Please discuss Run, Hide, Fight with your children.   


In Education,


Dr. Edward Theroux

Talawanda Superintendent