Usually being number one or leading the nation is a position you want to be in. Unfortunately when it comes to bomb threats in schools, Ohio has the unenviable distinction of being number one in the nation. In the last 40 school days , Ohio schools have experienced more than 37 bomb threats - more than any other state in the US.
But we're not alone. The incredible increase in school bomb threats or actual bomb-related incidents has been felt across the US, particularly in the Midwest and east coast. It's not just threats though - in the same 40 school days, potential bomb making materials were confiscated from six different students in two separate incidents.
So the logical question is - what are we doing about it? A review of bomb threat management training and resources for schools reveals that administrators, in Ohio and elsewhere, are being forced to do the best they can with frequently outdated and often dangerously antiquated response procedures - if they have anything in place at all.
In response to this critical need, the Educators School Safety Network is currently offering bomb threat management courses taught BY educators, FOR educators. While law enforcement input and support is crucial, school administrators must receive training to develop their capacity to respond appropriately to bomb threats and bomb incidents in their school. For more information on this timely course, please go to www.eSchoolSafety.org.
Bomb threats and bomb incidents in 2015 are very different from the "good old days" of pranks and protests. Today's world is a dangerous place and schools are not exempt from this threat. The "oh it's just a bomb threat hoax" perspective is irresponsible and dangerous thinking. Come on Ohio, let's be #1 in preparedness.