Howe Hall AIMS holds school shooter drill

(Dave MacQueen/WCIV)


GOOSE CREEK, S.C. (WCIV) -- Roll call at Howe Hall Elementary Thursday morning didn't involve any students.

And the subject{}was much more serious than math or science. The school held an "active shooter" training this morning. But, it was only a drill.

"We have an irate parent who comes in to the school, is denied access to his child, shoots some adults in the office, shoots some students in the hallway and then disappears in to the school somewhere," said Capt. David Aarons of the Goose Creek Police Department.

From there, law enforcement officers assumed the shooter could go anywhere and take hostages.{}So, officials swept the school, going door-to-door until they got the shooter.

Then they evacuated the building.

Students were prepared. Teachers told them Wednesday it would be like acting. But, in the real world, being prepared is a lot harder.

"Society is changing as we see it. We have to prepare for it just like a fire drill," Principal Chris Swetckie said.

"The truth is that, god forbid, in a real-life scenario, the best that we can hope for is control of chaos," Aarons said.

After the drill, officials got a chance they wouldn't usually have.

"We're going to step in to a briefing now so we can learn what went well, as well as any hiccups that may have occurred, so we can streamline the process and make sure we're more efficient in the future," Swetckie said.

The drill was a success, officials said. But, they did have some minor issues to address with timing; one of those is to ensure enough people have copies of the school's master keys.

The Goose Creek Police Department and the Berkeley County Sheriff's Office worked with the school district to set up the drill.

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