Teachers face ‘new reality’ in classroom

Educators attend active shooter training just in time for new school year

Teachers in Beauregard Parish tackled their final to-do list item before the new school year begins by attending a mandatory civilian response to active shooter training on Monday. 

Teachers at East Beauregard High School were the final group to receive the training from Beauregard Parish Sheriff’s Deputy Freddie Doyle and Chief Detective Mark Herford. The officers received their accreditation to offer the classes in July, and over the past few weeks offered the class to each school in the parish. 

Child welfare supervisor Eddie Joslin, who heads the district’s school safety team alongside assistant superintendent Marlin Ramsey, said the courses are a valuable tool to help prepare teachers for the worst-case scenario. 

“I’ve sat through this presentation at least eight or nine times now, and I have learned something new every time,” Joslin stated. 

The class offered teachers an analytical view of past public attack scenarios, including school shootings, in an attempt to help them prepare a response that they could utilize in their own classrooms during a mandatory lockdown situation. 

“If you have to lockdown, there needs to be more to it than that,” Herford stated. “You gotta have more tools in your toolbox than to just lock down.”

The class offered veteran teacher Melissa Thibodeaux a view of what she called “the new reality” of teaching. 

“It’s a scary thought to think that this could happen here, but I do believe most of my concerns were addressed. I feel comfortable that I now have some less conspicuous ways to protect my class without putting the fear of a shooting in front of them each day,” she stated. 

For teacher Jennifer Phillips, who has 13 years of teaching experience beneath her belt, the class illustrated the mounting pressure being placed on teachers’ shoulders. 

“In addition to making sure our students are learning the lessons that they need to succeed and making sure they are prepared for state testing, we now also have to make sure that they are protected from potential outside events and be on the constant lookout for potential warning signs,” she stated. 

“It can feel almost overwhelming when you think about it, but today’s class did give me the confidence I needed to feel sure that I will be able to protect my students.”

‘It’s a scary thought to think that this could happen here, but I do believe most of my concerns were addressed.’ 

Melissa Thibodeaux

Beauregard Parish teacher

who attended active shooter training


Teachers in Beauregard Parish attending a mandatory civilian response to active shooter training on Monday, August 13, 2018. 

Pamela SleezerBeauregard and Vernon Parish Reporter

Local News

From Moss Bluff to Diitabiki and back again


O’Brien sentenced to life for rape of child


Five accused of attempted ATM burglaries

Local News

I-10 bridge task force chair: Wednesday crash highlights need for new bridge

Local News

National Seat Check Saturday at Southwest Beverage


State Police investigating officer-involved fatal shooting of inmate


LC man arrested after shooting at neighbor’s home

State News

Coroner identifies man killed by alligator


Sulphur High student arrested after threat made


Sheriff: Escapee shot after firing at officers

Local News

Governor optimistic about federal hurricane aid for SW La.

Local News

Eastbound lane of I-10 bridge remains closed after fiery crash

Jim Beam

Jim Beam column:Finally, a feel-good movie

Business News

$21M rice mill should be complete by next harvest


Three more linked to Oakdale bar shooting

Local News

State confirms seventh pediatric death from COVID-19 in fourth surge

Local Business News

Jeff Davis hoping to join program designed to attract business

Local Business News

EMS Academy looking for ‘right people in right spots’

Local Business News

Four state amendments await voters Nov. 13

Local Business News

George Swift column: Recovery, rebuilding after storms

Local Business News

Names in the News: People making a difference in the Lake Area

Local News

Breaux has honed some serious culinary skills since his Crock-pot days

Local News

Cemetery Association asking for help with hurricane-damaged graves

Crime Brief

Fort Polk soldiers charged in DeRidder drive-by shooting