LAUSD Increases Emergency Drills to Normalize Them Like Fire Drills

The Los Angeles Unified School District is bumping up the number of times schools will hold emergency drills, the superintendent announced Tuesday.

"While none of us wants to live in a world of terror, we must dedicate the necessary time and effort to create a school environment in which the children and staff feel safe, secure and prepared. We must normalize the preparation as we have normalized fire drills," Board Member Dr. George J. McKenna III said.

LAUSD will be doubling the drills to holding at least one lockdown drill each semester beginning in 2020-21.

LAUSD said the drills are to help students and teachers prepare by teaching them what to do when all doors are locked and no one is allowed in or out of campus. 

Also part of the drill is to create a plan that gets students off campus and to a safe location when staying is no longer an option.

"When Congress refuses to legislate on common-sense gun control, it is our duty to ensure that our school staff and students are prepared with the necessary training and drills in the case of the unthinkable," Board Member Nick Melvoin said.

The move comes after a June announcement from Superintendent Austin Beutner that schools in LAUSD would eliminate random searches of students by July 2020.

"Administrative random searches are incredibly invasive, dehumanizing and communicate to students that they are viewed not as promising minds but as criminals," student board member Tyler Okeke said in a previous report.

Daily searches were put into place in the 1990s after mass shootings at schools.

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