With a population of 2,340, and being surrounded by open farm fields, Hermann fits the small town description where mostly everyone knows everyone. Over the past few years, there have been numerous school shootings around the nation. In response, the school held a training day for the staff that consisted of firing blanks and basic medical training.
“I believe our school is as safe as we can get it. We have had training days for our teachers, and every student received a bookmark with strategies of what to do if a perpetrator entered the building. Hopefully some day in the future we will be able to do an active shooter drill with the students to help give them an inside look of what it feels like in the situation,” said Principal Mr. Gary Leimkuehler.
Current Safety Procedures
Screening and monitoring who comes in the buildings on campus is the first level of protection.
“Any time we let someone enter the building, they have to tell us what they are doing here or who they are here to pick up. Mrs. [Roxanne] Zeiss and I look to see if the person is on the emergency contact list of the student they are picking up, and if they are we will let them come into the building,” said Mrs. Paula Schannuth, assistant to Mr. Todd Anderson.
It is essential for all staff to be aware of any behavior that is unusual or suspicious.
“Mr. Anderson and I both greet people as they come in. We have watched most of these kids come into school every day for the past few years, and we would be able to spot anything out of the ordinary,” said Mr. Leimkuehler.
Staff members are not the only ones watching for unusual behaviors.
“Over the past four years I have never felt unsafe,” said Sam Holland (12). “We live in a small town so I can recognize almost everybody. My friends and I would also be able to tell when someone is acting differently, and we would be able to alert someone almost immediately.”
Holland added, “In each of our classes we have also gone over what the plan would be if there were a school shooter in the building. Mrs. Rogers taught the English class what would be the best plan if there was a shooter and we were stuck in her room. It was very detailed, and our class was able to learn what to do.”