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  • Writer's pictureJoe Lyons

No Christmas Break for Law Enforcement: Training to Keep Schools Safe


When the Christmas break arrives, many kids are excited to have time off from school and enjoy the holiday season. However, the dedicated law enforcement officers and staff at the Ashland County Sheriff's Office and the Ashland County-West Holmes Career Center, along with Hayesville Fire Department are not taking a break. Instead, they are using this time to enhance their skills and prepare for any potential threats that may arise in the future.

Using Christmas Break to Strengthen School Security


During the Christmas break, the school resource officers and staff at the Ashland County-West Holmes Career Center have taken advantage of the empty school premises to conduct comprehensive training exercises. These exercises involve full-scale drills in various realistic scenarios, ranging from bomb threats to active shooter threats. The goal is to ensure that the officers and staff are well-prepared to handle any emergency situations that may arise within the school community.

Training for the Worst, Hoping for the Best


The Ashland County Sheriff's Office follows the creed of "training for the worst while hoping for the best." By conducting these intensive training drills, they are able to develop the skills and confidence needed to protect students, faculty, and staff in the event of a crisis. This proactive approach ensures that law enforcement officials are always thinking ahead and prepared for any unpredictable situations that may arise.

Experience and Expertise of Ashland County EMA Director


Anne Strouth, the Ashland County EMA Director, assumed her role on April 17, 2023, and has wasted no time in making a significant impact. Commenting on the recent training exercise at the Ashland County-West Holmes Career Center, she emphasized the importance of practice. "Practice makes perfect, and by engaging in different scenarios, law enforcement officers gain valuable experience and develop the ability to think on their feet. This prepares them to react swiftly and effectively in the face of adversity," she explained.

Maintaining a Safe Environment for Students and Staff


The ultimate goal of these training exercises is to maintain a safe environment for students, faculty, and staff in Ashland County. By simulating various emergency situations, law enforcement officers and staff can learn to identify potential threats, devise appropriate response strategies, and implement them swiftly and efficiently when necessary. This proactive approach helps to minimize risks and ensures that everyone in the school community is well-protected.

Utilizing Realistic Training Scenarios


The training drills conducted during the Christmas break are designed to be as realistic as possible. By creating scenarios that closely resemble potential threats, law enforcement officers and staff are better able to prepare for the unexpected. These exercises allow them to practice their decision-making abilities, communication skills, and teamwork under pressure. By experiencing simulated emergencies, they gain crucial insights and build the confidence needed to handle real-life situations.

The Importance of Preparedness


In today's uncertain world, maintaining a high level of preparedness is of utmost importance. By dedicating their time and energy to training exercises during the Christmas break, law enforcement officers demonstrate their commitment to the safety and well-being of the school community. Their dedication and proactive approach ensure that they are always ready to protect and serve, regardless of the circumstances.



While students enjoy their Christmas break, the law enforcement officers and staff at the Ashland County Sheriff's Office and the Ashland County-West Holmes Career Center are hard at work. Through rigorous training exercises, they are equipping themselves with the skills and mindset necessary to keep schools safe. Their commitment to preparedness and their dedication to the well-being of the school community are truly commendable. Thanks to their efforts, Ashland County can rest assured knowing that its schools are in capable and vigilant hands.


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