Frequently Asked Questions
Is the H.E.R.O. Program going to scare my kids?
No. The H.E.R.O. Program was specifically designed by experts in education, psychology, and law enforcement to be age-appropriate and non-threatening. All H.E.R.O. curriculum and drills have been vetted by parents, teachers, and school psychologists through rigorous real-world pilot programs. Approximately 17,000 students, representing various demographic groups, participated in the pilot programs.
Do you mention guns and other weapons in the H.E.R.O. Program?
No. The H.E.R.O. Program does not mention or name guns, knives, bombs, death, killing, bullets, blood, or other frightening subject matter anywhere in our child-facing materials.
Does your team present in-person professional development?
No. Our entire professional development course takes place online via the Sagence e-learning platform, a competency-based education system designed for adult learners. The course can be completed individually or in a blended/facilitated training model that allows school representatives to lead group training.
Do you have training for other school employees besides teachers?
Yes! The H.E.R.O. Program includes a competency-based e-learning course for administration, facilities, and other staff members. This version of the professional development is designed for those who work around students but are not responsible for delivering the H.E.R.O. curriculum.
How many lessons are there?
Five. Each grade level has five unique lesson plans based upon the accompanying narrative or story. Each lesson takes approximately 45 minutes to complete. We recommend the lessons be taught on concurrent days during a designated “H.E.R.O. Week” to bolster comprehension.
Who teaches the H.E.R.O. Program?
Teachers! After completing the online professional development course, the students’ teachers deliver the H.E.R.O. lesson plans in class. Research has proven that students learn best from their own teachers, not police officers or other unfamiliar instructors. This method reinforces team work during any violent event, as it will be the teachers and students working together to survive a real event until law enforcement arrives.
Can my school receive grants or be sponsored to receive the H.E.R.O. Program?
Yes! The H.E.R.O. Program can be purchased through grant funding from numerous sources. Additionally, our partnerships with local corporate and community sponsors can help fund the H.E.R.O. Program in schools with budgetary constraints.
Does H.E.R.O. work with existing lockdown policies and government-recommended active shooter responses?
Yes! The H.E.R.O. Program blends seamlessly with other government-recommended survival concepts. We have engaged with government agencies, including FEMA, to ensure the H.E.R.O. Program meets and exceeds current “best practices” recommended for active shooters or violent intruders.
How do I fit the H.E.R.O. curriculum into my class schedule? I already have too much to teach!
The H.E.R.O. Program meets Common Core ELA standards, meaning its narratives and lessons can be used to replace or supplement similar lessons in language arts. Additionally, the H.E.R.O. Program can augment or replace existing SEL lessons.
I have a student with special needs. Does the H.E.R.O. Program work for students with disabilities?
Yes! Our Student Accessibility Guide was developed to provide special education teachers with strategies to ensure equity and access for all students. While not all H.E.R.O. concepts can be adapted, our Student Accessibility Guide provides alternative strategies to help students with disabilities react appropriately to violence.
Will I know if my child is scared or affected by the H.E.R.O. Program?
Yes! In every lesson, there is a journaling component in which students are prompted to write, draw or video-journal about their emotions and what they learned in the lessons. Teachers review these journal entries to ensure there have been no emotional triggers or other areas of concern.
Do Teachers and Students Need to Learn H.E.R.O. Every Year?
Yes – The H.E.R.O. Program is designed to be taught on a yearly basis. Because new threats are constantly emerging, the H.E.R.O. Program must be adapted and updated to help students and teachers respond appropriately. The skills taught in the H.E.R.O. Program are considered “perishable” and must be repeated with frequency to establish automaticity under duress. Accordingly, schools and organizations purchase a yearly program license that provides updated curriculum, resources, and H.E.R.O. designation.