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Active shooter drills to be conducted in city schools Wednesday

When principals at Brookhaven campuses announce a lockdown over school intercoms today, it will be part of a required active shooter drill ordered by the state.

The drills are a requirement of the Mississippi School Safety Act, which was passed into law July 1. One drill must be conducted within the first 60 days of school and another during the second semester.

Rod Henderson, deputy superintendent for the Brookhaven School District, said the drill today will take just 10 to 15 minutes, so class time won’t be interrupted much. Notices were sent out to parents and guardians Monday.

He doesn’t expect a police presence with sirens and flashing blue lights.

“This is not the full bells and whistles,” he said. “We’re just conducting this with our staff, our school resource officers, our safety officers. They’re going to go through and do the routine checks that have been set in place as far as checking to see that all doors are secure, all students are secure.”

Henderson said the drill in the second semester will include police involvement as well as other departments, such as Lincoln County Emergency Management.

Superintendent Ray Carlock said the district has had active shooter drills in the past, but now they are mandated to twice a school year.

In March, Brookhaven voters approved an $8 million dollar bond issue with a portion of the funding earmarked for upgraded security — limiting access to students by the public, automatic doors, cameras and fencing.

Carlock said the district received the bond in August, and the upgrades are currently in the process of being planned with architects and engineers.