Among the many provisions enacted into law by the Florida legislature following the tragedy at Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School was a requirement that every school establish a Threat Assessment Team (TAT).
In my district, the TAT comprises the School Resource Officer, an administrator, a guidance counselor, and a teacher. I am the teacher appointed to the TAT for my school.
I found out through email when I was ordered to attend a mandatory training, Youth Mental Health First Aid. It was a good training, much of what I already knew but going through a reminder session is always useful.
But other than that, I had no idea of what my exact responsibilities are going to be and how the TAT actually works.
Since then, I have garnered some information and that is what I will share.
- The TAT is run by the School Resource Officer because it is a function of our school police department. It is the SRO who schedules the monthly meetings and chairs them.
- 9th-grade students will take a test via computer. The results will be scored and used to determine if a potential threat exists. (Oh, Florida! Why is your go-to strategy always a test, a score, and a judgment upon children?)
- The TAT will review the scores. (At this point, I’m not sure I really want to be a part of this process.)
- There is concern about liability among TAT appointees for false positives (identifying a student as a threat when they are not) and for missing students who are threats and do commit an atrocity.
Beyond this, I am still in the dark. As things become clearer, I will update.