An Alabama middle school has come under fire for a controversial letter requesting canned goods. However, the canned goods weren’t exactly described as such. W.F. Burns Middle School referred to them as “weapons of choice.”
According to Fox 6 Now, the letter sent home to parents was reportedly an announcement regarding a food drive in wake of the recent school shootings that have taken place in the United States. Although food drives are quite common for good causes, this particular food drive is a bit different.
The letter, reportedly approved by the school’s principal Priscella Holley, states that the “eight-ounce can of beans, corn, soup, or any other type of canned food” will be used as “weapons of choice” to protect against any possible intruders that may enter classrooms. So, hypothetically speaking, if an intruder were to barge inside of a classroom, the students would be allowed to throw the cans at possible assailants. The new tactic is reportedly part of the school district’s ALICE program, reports WHNT.
The acronym, which stands for “alert, lockdown, inform, counter, evacuate” is reportedly a drill taught to students in the event of a school shooting. The letter sent to parents reportedly explains how the cans contribute to the procedure that has been introduced to students through the program.
Here’s a screenshot of the letter.
Although the school’s request for students to bring weapons is only metaphorical, parents still weren’t pleased with the wording of the letter or the concept of the food drive. Some parents also argued that the concept of the food drive encourages students to fight back as opposed to focusing on safety first.
“I think it is a bad idea, it seems to me that it would mainly anger the shooter more, and cause the students to def. be targeted, and which one of them is an accurate pitcher, enough to trust them to try something like this? It would be much safer to train the ones of them who are adequate for the job to learn how to actually shoot a gun, and to have it available to them, providing the parents are agreement with the idea.”
However, the school district feels otherwise. The Alabama Department of Education and Dr. Kelli Hodge, Superintendent of Chambers County Schools, recently spoke out in support of the ALICE program, reports New York Daily News.
“Understandably, this is a sensitive topic. There is no single answer for what to do, but a survival mindset can increase the odds of surviving… There are three basic options: run, hide, or fight. You can run away from the shooter, seek a secure place where you can hide and/or deny the shooter access, or incapacitate the shooter to survive and protect others from harm.”
“I can honestly say that the major point of the the training … is to be able to get kids evacuated and not be sitting ducks hiding under desks.”
Do you agree with the school’s decision to refer to canned goods as weapons? Do you agree with the procedure that has been taught through the ALICE program? Share your thoughts.
[Image(s) via Budget.Bytes]