On school grounds: Simulation of a school lockdown

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date


Publication Title

32nd European Modeling and Simulation Symposium, EMSS 2020

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Last Page



Active shooter, Discrete event simulation, Evacuation, School lockdown


© 2020 The Authors. Active shooter situations are becoming increasingly more frequent every year in the United States. According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation reports, 20.6% of the incidents between 2000 and 2018 occurred at educational facilities. Thus, educational institutions should prepare personnel and students on how to react and respond during active shooter situations. This paper simulates an active shooter situation in order to investigate the effect of different student decisions and law enforcement response times on the number of casualties during a school lockdown. Different scenarios are simulated using the “run, hide, fight” protocol for various response times and student reaction strategies. The student reaction strategies are based on a survey that students from the Muscogee & Russell County school district completed for a hypothetical event. The simulation results indicate that slower police response times and having students hiding in the classrooms without locking the doors can result in an increased number of casualties.

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