AKRON, Ind. (WNDU) - School safety is on the minds of students, staff and parents alike.
Tippecanoe Valley High School is stepping up their emergency training and supplies with the help of a Martin's Super Markets One School at a Time grant.
Bright yellow drawstring bags hold special contents for the classrooms at Tippecanoe Valley schools. They also hold a special meaning for 2018 graduate Donald Bradley.
While a student last year, he became interested in a project that will put emergency kits in every classroom.
“I just wanted to see the schools prepared,” Bradley said. “There's a lot of things that could happen. Something that's important to us as a school corporation; Tippecanoe Valley, we're always ready.”
“Donald was in my class. He has a great passion for his community and his school,” teacher Jeff Shriver said. “We talked about things that were nationally going on and even hit close to home here in Indiana, about emergencies that might face schools.”
In each bag there will be emergency items, like gauze and even tourniquets, paid for by community donations and local grants like Martin's Super Markets' $1,000 One School at a Time grant.
“We couldn't have done it without Martin’s support and their cooperation,” Bradley said. “We're still accepting donations because of the simple fact that it will take money to maintain these kits. And it will take time to get them done.”
The teachers will be trained on how to use the materials by local health care professionals.
“We feel like our teachers deserve to be trained and know what's in these bags,” Tippecanoe Valley High School Assistant Principal Brandon Kresca said. “We hope to never have to use them, but in the case of a natural disaster or an emergency, we want to be prepared and I think part of that is training.”
“Knowing that they're comfortable with the equipment, and the items that they'll be using, that helps the situation all around,” said school resource officer Dalis Owens, of the Kosciusko County Sheriff's Department.
Owens said these kits will help the injured receive medical attention until help arrives.
“We're in a rural community,” Owens added. “These kits will help us buy time until professionals could get here.”
For Bradley, it's a reassuring thought to know there's an extra amount of care.
“Here at Valley, it's family pride," he said. "Being a Viking. Graduating from here, it's about the family. It's not about just coming back and doing it. I'm doing it for the kids and I’m doing it for the people of Tippecanoe Valley.”
In all, there will be enough bags for 144 classrooms districtwide. Bradley plans to keep working with the project and toward his goal of a job in law enforcement.
This story kicks off our new season of One School at a Time stories.
If you want to nominate your school for a One School at a Time $1,000 grant, just fill out an online application here.