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Safety Protocol

Albuquerque Public Schools has been working closely with the Albuquerque Police Department and the Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office to develop the best plans for keeping our students and staff safe. APS has an obligation to make sure our students and staff are prepared to protect themselves.

Changes to safety protocol

APS is no longer training students and staff to quietly hide in a locked room if someone with a gun is reported on campus. The training APS is providing recommends a much more active response, with a focus on evacuating the building and running from danger when possible.

  • APS teachers and staff will be trained to respond to an active shooter on campus. The training is based on national data and federal and local police agencies.
  • Students will be trained through age-appropriate drills and, at the secondary levels, class meetings. 

Identifying an emergency situation

The way APS identifies emergency situations will change. If there is a potentially dangerous situation near campus – a police investigation, reports of gunfire, a suspicious looking individual, even a bear – APS will place schools in a “shelter in place.” During a shelter in place, the school building is locked and no one may leave or enter, but normal activity may continue inside.

“Lockdowns” will no longer mean hiding quietly behind locked doors. Instead, if APS calls for a lockdown, new procedures may call for staff to evacuate the campus with their students.


Families will be notified through phone and email messages through our school to home communications tool, SchoolMessenger. It is vital that your child’s school has up-to-date contact information on file so we can keep you informed. If you change your number or email address, please let your child’s school know. Updates will also be posted to the school and district website and to Twitter (follow @ABQschools).

Updating safety at schools

In addition to the active shooter training, APS is working on updating school safety. For example:

  • We are installing locks that allow staff to safely secure classrooms
  • We are improving and adding fencing to restrict access to schools
  • We are limiting entrance points at schools
  • We are updating our alarm and camera systems
  • In some cases, we are installing systems that require visitors to be buzzed into the building
  • In order to keep track of who is on campus, we are requiring all volunteers and visitors to sign in, provide some form of ID, wear a badge while at school and return the badge at the end of the visit.


Contact your school’s counselor, teachers or administrators if you have questions or concerns.

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