RICHLAND COUNTY, Ill. (WTHI) - Jeffrey Ryden teaches at Richland County high school. He also has two children in the school system.
Ryden says, "I think about my two children there. I know that we're doing everything that we can to prepare for the unthinkable."
Today at Richland County elementary that unthinkable is on every teacher's mind.
Ryden says, "We're taking the approach that it very well could happen here and we need to take it seriously."
Ellis and Ellis Consulting Firm were on hand. The goal was to get teachers ready.
Ronald Ellis explains, "Unfortunately most of the rampage shooting targeted violence is over in three to four minutes. Long before officers even get here. So that's why we say the schools are the first responders. They need to move people to safety."
Teachers learned CPR and other life-saving tools. Law enforcement then helped put those new skills to the test.
Ryden explains, "When you start hearing those gunshots start echoing through the hall ways your brain immediately goes to what if this was a real day of class. What if my kid is outside in the building somewhere else while i am here in this part of the building."
Drills helped law enforcement identify issues with their own plans. For teachers like Ryden, it prepares them for that unthinkable.
Ryden says, "We must be vigilant. We must prepare for something like this. And i think that we are trying to do the best that we can to keep all the children safe."