School district’s new security plan raising eyebrows, concerns

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VALLEY, Ala. (WVTM) – In the light of recent school shootings, many school districts are looking at new ways to protect students.

While most districts are discussing added security or door locks, one Alabama school district says it is giving the students the power to stop an intruder.

W.F. Burns Middle School is asking its students to bring canned food items to class in case of an emergency.

During a lockdown situation, students are trained to block the classroom door with their desks.

If the intruder is still able to make it into the classroom, the students would then resort to throwing the canned goods.

“You try to evacuate and keep people informed and away from harm’s way as much as possible,” said Dr. Kelli Hodge, superintendent of the district. “You know, that this is just really a very small part. But you know, the whole canned good thing just sort of took people by surprise.”

Parents say they have mixed reactions about the school’s security plan.

One mother told WVTM that she is worried students will use the cans to hurt classmates.

The school says the cans will be kept in a container in each classroom, so students won’t have access to the cans throughout the day.

Another woman gave her granddaughter advice should she ever need to use the canned goods.

“I’ve told her to aim for the face. You know, and be sure she has enough behind it to knock somebody out, to give her the opportunity to put some space between herself and the intruder,” said Deborah Carmichael.

Students and teachers are undergoing training to use the cans effectively.

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