Training Armed Teachers in Colorado: Just Your Everyday Warrior-Hero

Opinion

school teachers on the firing line
school teachers on the firing line

U.S.A. -(Ammoland.com)-  What does it mean to be a warrior, a hero, and a first responder. I watched as volunteer school staff learned to stop an armed attack. They learned how to treat the injured until help arrives at their school. When they need these skills, they will need them urgently. Mere seconds will count, and lives will depend on their actions. We need more of these trained teachers.

The training program is called FASTER for Faculty/Administrator Safety Training and Emergency Response. This class in the Denver area drew about two dozen school staff from across the state of Colorado since the attack on the school in Sandy Hook, Connecticut, about two thousand teachers across the US have taken FASTER training.  The volunteers in this class came from both new schools that were setting up their first security program and from existing districts that were expanding their staff. There was a lot to cover in this three-day survey course.

I call it a survey course because the information we learned one minute had to be applied the next. These teachers will take these basic building blocks and their medical kits home with them. There, they will tailor the program for their particular school. The attendees ranged from school superintendents to bus drivers and custodians. We can call all of them teachers, but 60 percent of FASTER students are from non-classroom positions. While the FASTER Colorado instruction and instructors are world class, the application is cutting edge.

FASTER
FASTER

The training course borrows everything it can. They take emergency trauma training from the military. From police academies, they borrow training techniques on how to shoot. The course uses concealed carry methods from the civilian world. With all it borrows, the application is unique to FASTER.

Armed first responders are not the police. These teachers don’t have to chase fleeing bad guys across town. Neither are these teachers like private gun owners who can retreat, lock their bedroom door, and wait for police to arrive. Defending our kids requires a special mix of determination and restraint. Each volunteer and each school applies what they learned in a way that fits their unique resources and needs. Some of these schools expected the police to arrive 40 minutes after they are called. They are on their own until help arrives.

FASTER medical training. Image from Recoil Web
FASTER medical training. Image from Recoil Web

These volunteers learned a lot. Some of these volunteer school staff were new to carrying a concealed firearm. They overcame their uncertainty as they were trained. They learned the new mechanical skills with practice. They also learned emergency trauma care. We put on tourniquets and packed wounds. We learned about the legal use of lethal force, and how to apply chest seals to save a life. That was the easy part.

The hard part was attitude and mental preparation. Everyone wants to stop the killing, but no one wants to kill. The sad, hard, fact is that sometimes we have to shoot someone to save lives. That warrior ethic was the hard part for us to grasp. These teachers accepted the uncomfortable and unfamiliar role of a warrior because of who they love. They love their kids. These school staff will risk their lives to save their students.

These volunteer school staff sacrificed their innocence to become protectors. Their character and their commitment were essential.

Mindset is the key to saving lives. You might have a slow draw as you present your firearm to stop the threat. That adds fractions of a second, but denying that the gunshot you heard down the hall is real can add forever. That denial is our all-to-normal response.

We assume the sound we heard isn’t a gunshot since we don’t expect an attack on our schools. We assume the screams we hear are a from a game or a fight since we don’t normally hear our children screaming in terror. Unfortunately, today, those nightmares can be real. Now, what are we going to do?

The warrior mindset says that those sounds are the worst thing we can imagine. We will find the cause and be prepared to stop someone who could be killing our kids. That determination to do whatever it takes to save lives is the attitude of a hero.

We don’t use the term “hero” very often. It took me a minute to be comfortable with it. Maybe you are familiar with a hero’s attitude. See for yourself if I’m using it correctly.

This is a hero’s prayer-

I hope that evil never comes to my school. But if my children are threatened, then I pray that I am there. Let it be me who stops it.
For if not me, then who? If not now, then when?

I wish you could meet the instructors and students I saw. We are blessed that the volunteer school staff are eager to save our children. We are rich beyond measure that they are our neighbors.

We need more volunteers like them.

References-

Instructors-

FASTER CO Program Sponsors-


Slow Facts

About Rob Morse

The original article is here.  Rob Morse writes about gun rights at Ammoland, at Clash Daily, and on his SlowFacts blog. He hosts the Self Defense Gun Stories Podcast and co-hosts the Polite Society Podcast. Rob is an NRA pistol instructor and combat handgun competitor.

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    MIKESara L Russotim brownjackjohn Recent comment authors
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    MIKE
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    MIKE

    How about Frontsight Training Facility in Pahrump, NV.—They offer Good Training —Look up their Facility & Operations. I have access to Some of their Firearm Training , If any Teachers are Interested — Mike– [email protected]

    jack
    Guest
    jack

    I agree with John and since when is taking a course like this make you a “warrior hero?” Linbaugh and others have warned us of the loss of the language and it’s real meaning. Shit, nowadays everyone is a hero of some sort from being a cancer survivor to a teacher with a gun. The word hero means cheap and takes away its importance and value from real heroes who actually do something above and beyond what their job description says to actually become real heroes!

    john
    Guest
    john

    Oh goodie, Colorado the marijuana state now loaded with liberal California imports running from their liberal state voted in a completely Democrat state house and senate with a really nifty ultra-liberal Democrat governor which will do their best to outlaw or over regulate every type of firearm owner option in the world is going to “effectively” arm teachers. Sure!.

    tim brown
    Guest
    tim brown

    And why wouldn’t you want these teachers armed?

    Haya Busa
    Guest
    Haya Busa

    T H I N K ! ! !,
    So you are going to have teachers armed with just a handgun trying to stop a bad person with a long gun (shotgun or rifle) that is wearing armour? Who do you think is going to win this gunfight?
    T H I N K ! ! !

    Wild Bill
    Guest
    Wild Bill

    @Haya Busa, Every gun fight is a “come as you are” affair. Better armed with a pistol, than armed with a piece of chalk. Maybe the intruder won’t have a long arm or body armor. Maybe a teacher familiar with the layout will find some advantage over his opponent.
    Maybe there will be too many well armed, well trained, well practiced, determined intruders for the teachers, police and follow on forces to defeat.
    One never really knows, but preparing as best as logistics allow, working as a team, and thinking in terms of scenarios are better than nothing.

    Whit
    Guest
    Whit

    Yes, we have, you might want to as well? Factors to consider: Time after time attackers have quit cold when any resistance is shown. The teachers don’t have to win, they have to buy time for the pros to arrive. The teachers will now be armed and will know the layout of their school much better than an attacker. The attacker will be expecting an easy, unresisting target and both of those factors will help mitigate an attackers advantage of choice of time and choice of weapon. Some attackers use only handguns, all show tactical inflexibility where if their plan… Read more »

    Dave in Fairfax
    Editor
    Dave in Fairfax

    My money is on the determined person who shoots from an ambush position. Schools have hallways with doors on both sides. it’s easy to organize your teachers to set up kill boxes with that configuration. Most schools have concrete block construction. That makes it fairly safe to use cross-fire against an intruder, especially if the halls have lockers.
    You may be able to ride motorcycles, but you aren’t able to design combat scenarios.

    joefoam
    Guest
    joefoam

    Just knowing that there will be armed, trained personnel on campus will make potential shooters think twice. Maybe we could avert an event rather that react to one.

    Vanns40
    Guest
    Vanns40

    Hats Busa: Don’t know anything about real life and death gun fights do you? This might be a teachable moment for you. Take a FEW tactical courses, that is, of course, if you even own a gun.

    tim brown
    Guest
    tim brown

    Don’t feed the trolls like Haya who is an unthinking brainwashed useful idiot of the state controlled media.

    Sara L Russo
    Guest
    Sara L Russo

    Well as all but 2 (I beleave that was the number of school shootings that involved long guns), shootings have involved hand guns. And only 1 in which the shooter wore body armor. So 2 of your assertions for all intesnse and purpose are statistically 0. A teacher who wants to armed, is a far site more than likely to shoot the shooter before he does any additional damage, assuming that he has a a chance to do any yet. And as no one knows when a particular staff member is armed, the disgruntled adult won’t stand a chance, when… Read more »