Conklin School students practice emergency evacuation - WREX.com – Rockford’s News Leader

Conklin School students practice emergency evacuation

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Rockford's Conklin School practices what it would do if it were in a situation similar to what happened in Moore, Oklahoma.

The United Lutheran Church had been the school's emergency evacuation location for years, but no one could ever remember practicing the drill, until a church parishioner, Linda Wiggs, suggested it.

"I had watched the news when the Sandy Hook tragedy happened and I noticed that their safety spot was across the street," said Linda. "The thought came to me that that was one way that our church could be a good neighbor is to have everyone come in the building, see the building."

Linda presented her idea to other members of her church, then to Conklin school administrators

That was back in January. School leaders say the recent devastation by the Moore, Oklahoma tornado solidifies their need to practice the evacuation route.

"We practice all sorts of drills at school, whether it's a fire drill or tornado drill and this is just one more level for our kids to experience on being safe and we want them to be familiar with the place if we should need to evacuate," says Conklin School Principal Jan Johnson.

The drill isn't just for an intruder or tornado emergencies, a gas leak or broken water main could also force students and faculty to seek a safe place to wait for parents.

Kristin Zimmerman, United Lutheran Church's Pastor" says, "At least now we know, the church staff knows and some of my parishioners know and the school staff know how it would go if there was a real emergency."

Conklin Elementary School leaders say they hope to continue this drill at least one a year.

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