Local Business Offers Free Active Shooter Response Training to Area Teachers

Lumberton resident Brian Stutes and his team at TAC Response Solutions, LLC want to train teachers to respond to active shooter situations.

About 10 years ago, this intervention training became one of his passions.

But over the past few days, his company has received hundreds of emails — not just from Southeast Texans — asking to participate in his training.

In the wake of Tuesday’s shooting at Robb Elementary in Uvalde that killed 19 students and two teachers, governments, school districts and community members are wondering where to go from here.

The long-debated issue of gun control measures is back on the national stage, with U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, reportedly meeting with Democrats to “find common ground” on the issue, according to The Houston Chronicle.

But, as officials at the federal level seek to address the problem nationwide, many Texas are wondering how they can address the problem directly in their schools.

In response, Stutes’ company posted a Facebook post on Wednesday about free active shooter response training to any Southeast Texas teacher or school staff who would like to participate, with the goal of training everyone who participates. before the start of the school year in the fall.

While a number of Southeast Texans have already contacted him, he has also received responses from people in Dallas, Palestine, Austin and Houston.

Stutes, who has experience in the military and as a doctor, said the aim of the sessions was to provide training for teachers to protect students and stay safe. He said it also gives teachers the tools to respond to active shooter situations.

“We’ve talked and we’re sick of this happening and we’re sick of schools not doing anything about it,” said Stutes, who also spent 16 years leading police, security and military training. . “We’re going to donate time throughout the summer. The goal is to schedule two to three classes a month and we’re going to make it free for teachers. We make a living doing this – we want to make a difference, we want to be part of the solution.”

The Jefferson County Constable’s Office, Pct. 1 Jevonne “JC” Pollard, in partnership with Project ChildSafe, is offering free classes on gun locks and gun safety starting June 1.

“This partnership will educate adults, children and teens about gun safety while providing free gun locks to help keep kids safe,” a post on the Facebook page said. desk.

For more information on gun safety courses, call (409) 835-8450 or visit 1085 Pearl St., Ste. 103 in Beaumont to speak with a deputy.

Padlocks can be collected from the Pearl Street office or residents can request them from MPs who will have them in their patrol units.

The training is for unarmed teachers and teachers authorized to carry firearms on campus if they have received the required training and certification.

It is at the discretion of each individual school district if they choose to implement such a program.

Stutes said there were few districts in southeast Texas that had endorsed the program, called the Guardian program, but did not reveal which districts.

Southeast Texas’ largest school district, Beaumont ISD, does not have a guard program, and teachers and staff are not permitted to carry firearms on campus.

For unarmed teachers, the training includes a discussion of the psychology of an active shooter and a review of case studies from previous events.

“We should always learn and develop new tactics and new techniques to be able to fight these people,” Stutes said.

Trainees will be educated on the “Move, Dodge, Attack” technique as opposed to the US Department of Homeland Security’s “Run. Hide. Fight” technique.

“We teach them how to go through that – it’s not a linear progression, it’s very dynamic – and people can go through that and they can create a decision-making loop as an event happens. and evolves,” Stutes said. . “I don’t necessarily want someone to run – if I just tell them to run, they can run straight (into) the shooter. I haven’t given them direction. So, we want to give them better direction.”

Stutes said he also doesn’t necessarily want people barricading themselves in a lockdown, even though that’s usually the active-fire procedure.

“By locking yourself in, you’re basically putting yourself in a very defensive, weak position, and sitting inside the shark cage waiting to be eaten, right?” he said. “So we prefer a bit more of a dynamic approach – a bit more of a reflective approach. (It) gives them more options to react and respond.”

The training will also cover moving around a building – with students and alone – when an active shooter is present.

“(We’ll also) teach them tactical medicine, basically stopping advanced bleeding, tourniquets, how to dress wounds, chest seals, things like that,” Stutes said.

For armed teachers, or “custodians,” and school resource officers, Stutes said there will be a different curriculum that will involve firearms, movement and threats.

“We’re going to take them to the range and work with them,” he said.

Stutes said state-mandated teachers under the Guardian program have a minimum requirement of 16 hours of training, which he says isn’t enough.

“When we train tutors, we believe they should have 40 hours of initial training, and then they should have at least quarterly training every quarter to follow up to maintain their skills,” he said. “We are asking teachers to carry firearms to protect children – they need to be trained and they need to be trained above the average civilian.”

TAC Response Solutions’ team of instructors all have experience as SWATs, special forces or paramedics, Stutes said.

“We are stepping up and everyone is volunteering their time and we are going to run classes,” he said. “We put them at the level of what we would do if we were paid for it. We don’t back down or anything, we give them everything we can to make them as safe as possible.”

Stutes said his company also conducts threat vulnerability assessments for schools, churches and corporate clients when they visit a facility and identify weak spots or areas that could be strengthened.

“We want to slow down the arrival of the shooter – we try to increase the time and distance between the threat and the children,” he said. “That’s how we increase survivability. Obviously there’s a mental aspect and mental health needs to be addressed. I don’t deal with politics and I don’t deal with mental health I’m in the business of stopping shooters and taking out threats and fixing people who have holes in them. That’s what we’re really good at.”

It’s all about preparation, said Stutes.

“The villain always chooses the location, time and duration of the attack,” he said. “(They control) all three of those things. So we have to be able to respond to that effectively and efficiently. We have to be able to neutralize a threat and we have to be able to save children.”

Unarmed teachers who sign up for training need only bring with them a willingness to learn, a good attitude and verification of their employment as a teacher in Texas, Stutes said.

Teachers who are part of the Guardian program should bring a letter from their district administration confirming that they are an active member of the Guardian program and a copy of their port license. They must also provide their own firearm, Stutes said.

Stutes said he heard from a corporate sponsor on Friday that all ammunition costs for tutor teachers in the training would also be covered.

Texas teachers interested in training can contact Stutes at brian@tacresponsesolutions.com.



Gladys T. Hensley