NEW ORLEANS — The Orleans Parish School Board concluded its second annual active shooter drill Wednesday which aims to teach staff how to react in the event of a school shooting on their campus.

Officers from the New Orleans Police Department arrived at McDonogh 35 High School in Gentilly around 6 a.m. to prepare for the school shooting drill. They were later joined by other first responders, school faculty and staff and a SWAT team. 

Police and OPSB leaders say the training these individuals received Wednesday could later save lives.

NOPD Superintendent Shaun Ferguson said that teachers, coaches and school administrators become first responders in shootings and their actions in the first few minutes could make the difference between life and death.

Orleans Parish Schools Superintendent Dr. Henderson Lewis said last year's drill was a rude awakening.

"I almost felt like I needed an intervention after," Dr. Lewis said. "It was very tough because it was real. Everyone who played in the scenarios played their parts well. You really felt like you were watching a real situation happen. Just to see someone who was shot or possibly killed, it was really tough. But it really had such an impact on our schools."

Police say school staff that attended the training often go back to their schools and pass along what they have learned. Officers also visit other schools to teach employees what to do in an active shooter situation.


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