Tecumseh Local Schools is the only school district in Clark County that has partnered with the Clark County Sheriff’s Office to purchase new emergency response kits for every building.
The $6,000 used to buy the 60 kits was split between the sheriff’s office and the school district. The kits contain two types of tourniquets — one for less severe injuries like a broken arm on the playground — and another that’s similar to what deputies carry that’s used for severe bleeding like in the case of a gunshot wound.
Each tourniquet takes seconds to put on someone and could be the difference between life and death in an emergency situation.
Tecumseh School Resource Officer Deputy John Loney said each district building will have at least 10 kits depending on the size of the school, and designated staff outside of strictly nurses will know how to use them.
“Our long term goal is to get as many as we can in the district through this program,” Loney said. “The more we can get trained, the better we are at protecting our kids, protecting our staff and protecting our schools.”
On Wednesday, several of those staff members underwent training from Clark County sheriff’s deputies about how to use the different tourniquets as well as how to stop severe bleeding when the tourniquet isn’t accessible.
If the injury is bad enough, a person can bleed out in less than five minutes if the bleeding isn’t stopped.
Living in a world where school staff are also first responders isn’t something Kari Dillman thought about when she started her career in education.
Dillman is currently an intervention specialist at Park Layne Elementary.
She hopes she never has to break open the kit — but she’s ready if she does.
“That’s kind of intimidating to think that you’re a first responder — but it’s great that we are trained so that we can get there two minutes before somebody else gets there,” she said. “I think that we’ll have confidence if we are in a situation that we can help.”
Getting the kits into Tecumseh required a lot of legwork. It started when Tecumseh Local nurses visited West Liberty-Salem Local Schools and got suggestions about how improve what they had in their own district.
West Liberty was the site of a school shooting in 2017 and the incident greatly affected how other area schools approached school safety.
The nurses included Loney in the idea, and with his connection to the sheriff’s office — the ball got rolling.
The sheriff’s office put up $4,000 for the kits, with the district covering the remaining $2,000.
Tecumseh is hopeful to have the kits in place by Christmas.
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