The goal of the ALERRT course is to aid police officers, specifically the true first responders, in their ability to safely and effectively respond to, address, and stop an active shooter.
The tragedy at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado changed the way law enforcement reacts to active shooting situations. When two students took control of Columbine High School on April 20, 1999, the first responding patrol officers established a perimeter and called in the SWAT team. For 45 minutes, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold had free rein of the school before the SWAT team made entry. During this 45 minutes, the shooters killed 13 people, critically wounded 24 and injured more than 160 others. The first responders were crucified in the media for their perceived lack of response to the unfolding events at Columbine High School. What the media and public did not understand was that the first responders acted as they had been trained and conditioned to do. This tragedy identified weaknesses and outdated philosophies in tactical training and response.
Emergency deployment protocols were developed across the country and agencies recognized the need to empower the first responders to make immediate, tactical decisions to stop the ongoing violence and save lives. However, this new mandate must also be addressed in training. It is neither appropriate nor advisable to simply TELL our first responders how to respond without first training them HOW TO respond. The ultimate mission of the ALERRT Active Shooter course is to train first responders in basic tactical skills to safely and effectively respond to, address, and stop an active shooter and to offer this training to agencies at little or no cost to the agency or the officers taking the course.
Violent attacks in schools, businesses and public places continue to rise, and national terrorism alerts remain in the headlines. The responsibility for quality comprehensive tactical training falls on the shoulders of the men and women who are the front line responders to such critical incidents. Law enforcement agencies across the country are seeking to develop new tactics, policies and awareness programs to deal with active shooter situations.
To date, the Homeland Security Training Center (HSTC) has hosted two Train-the-Trainer courses and trained nearly 90 officers to teach this curriculum throughout the state. The HSTC has also trained nearly 650 law enforcement, correction, and military officials in the two-day operator course of the ALERRT training.
What Iowa citizens are saying about the training:
“Finally we are going to be proactive. Those who think it can't happen in Fort Dodge are fooling themselves. It can happen on the street, restaurant, and yes a school as society has changed from when I know I was a kid. Thank you for giving our police men and women the knowledge they need to help us all if this should ever happen here.”
What Iowa law enforcement officers are saying about the training:
Instructors were extremely knowledgeable in the application of law enforcement in reference to rural action shooters. I cannot give enough praise and thank you to the Instructors for their time and efforts. I pray I never need to use the skills I’ve gained from this training but if I do, I feel more confident in my ability.
ALERRT II-June 2-4, 2014 Derek Christie/Deputy/Webster county SO
This was absolutely the most realistic training I have ever attended. Leaving this training I feel more confident in my skills than ever before. This training should be mandatory for every officer. Working in fish & game enforcement this training filled a void in training to handle situations I routinely work in.
ALERRT II-June 2-4, 2014 Eric Hoffman/Conservation Officer/IA DNR
Good Training, realistic training that could save Police Officers lives!
ALERRT II-June 2-4, 2014 Eric Holub/Deputy
Every agency could be presented with this sort of threat. This training opens your eyes to tactics that many people may never think of. It’s imperative this training stays available to every officer and continues to expand.
ALERRT II-June 2-4, 2014 Patrick Monaghan/Chief of Police/Farnhamville PD
An absolute “must” training course for “all” law enforcement & high risk private security. The instructors were great motivators and offered great instruction. This needs to be an ongoing training program.
ALERRT II-June 2-4, 2014 James Moncherry/Cpl/On Points Security
Training should be mandatory and should be multiple times a year. Instructors were very helpful in explaining situations/helping officers out. VERY EXCELLENT TRAINING!!!
ALERRT II-June 2-4, 2014 Braden J Quist/Patrolman/Red Oak PD
This should be mandatory for all officers, and a refresher course each year! Any state with expansive rural areas should have this for this officers
ALERRT II-June 2-4, 2014 Rick Rieken/Deputy/Franklin Cty SO
Great Course! This class is applicable to every jurisdiction in the nation. I hope every officer gets the opportunity to take part in this class.
ALERRT – March 2014 Chief Patrick Monaghan/Farnhamville Police Dept.
This is definitely worth the time, a real eye-opener. The closest thing to real life.
ALERRT – March 2014 Deputy Kevin Calrider/Carroll County Sheriff Office \
Excellent training. Nice to train and do practice exercises with co-workers. Easily understood instructors when presenting information. Highly recommend this training to others.
ALERRT – April 2014 Deputy Ben Ward/Buchanan County Sheriff Office
Great training, very knowledgeable Instructors. Strongly agree that every officer in the State should take this training.
ALERRT-December 2013 Deputy Jeff Koder/Marion County Sheriff Office
This was an exceptional class, the instructors were highly competent and the instruction built a strong foundation for interagency scenarios. This is most likely the best tactical training I’ve received the last 20 years.
ALERRT-December 2013 Chief Robert Bokinsky/Pella Police Dept.
Amazing teachings/instructors. I appreciate that you work with officers of all Levels. Thanks!!!
ALERRT-November 2013 Police Officer Stephany Goodhue/Indianola
Outstanding! Instructors were very knowledgeable in both instruction and practical applications. Some of, if not the best, in 20 years of Police work.
ALERRT-October 2013 Dirk Linkoln/Glenwood Police Dept
Excellent Instruction/Instructors. They weren’t just book smart, they had real world experience.
ALERRT-October 2013 Michael Hernandez/ Council Bluffs Police