The program is like a video game... but much darker.
In June of 2017, the Homeland Security Department released a simulator to train first responders on how to deal with an active shooter. The agency is expanding that program for an entirely different demographic: school teachers.
Made in partnership with the Army, the program is titled EDGE or Enhanced Dynamic Geo-Social Environment. It looks and functions a lot like a video game and trainees can play the role of teacher, shooter or officer.
But unlike a typical video game, this simulation is based on real-life experiences. Developers listened to dispatch audio from the Sandy Hook and Virginia Tech shootings to help give the program veracity.
"With teachers, they did not self-select into a role that they expect to have bullets flying at them. That's something that they did not choose for their career," said Tamara Griffith, a chief engineer on the EDGE program, to Associated Press. "Unfortunately it's becoming a reality, so we want to give them that chance to understand what options are available to them."
The $5.6 million program will be released this spring.
To learn more, watch the video below from the AP: