Ex-military warning schools on terror risk

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Soldiers in Liverpool. Pic © Ida Husoy

A Bootle-based military academy has set out to provide children with skills that could keep them safe in a terror attack, as they encourage schools across Merseyside to take action.

Despite the ex-soldiers reassuring people they do not expect a terrorist incident to take place in a UK school, they see no harm in equipping teachers with the knowledge to keep both themselves and pupils prepared and safe.

The Government’s Prevent agenda has led to training sessions being led by veterans on terrorism, radicalisation and extremism across the North West, with Merseyside’s ex-servicemen taking their new role very seriously.

Wayne Forsyth of UK Military Schools told JMU Journalism: “It’s interesting working with children. We’ve put on educational programmes for a long time now, but they’ve all been about team building and generally giving children the confidence to do what they want to do.

“We’ve only been to a few schools around Merseyside so far to deliver this new scheme. We really hope more and more schools will start to pick up on it – it’s really important.”

YouTube: UK Military Schools

Members of the public are urged to remain on constant alert to the danger of terrorism, though children are understandably less well informed, and it is this knowledge gap that the Canal Street-based academy hopes to fill.

Mr Forsyth said: “It’s obviously a sensitive subject, but we were so used to it in our day-to-day lives as soldiers that we do have to be careful how we get the message across to the little ones.

“They need to feel safe, but then also they need to know nothing is going to happen to them. We’re really proud of the way it’s going and the schools really appreciate it.”

About Hannah Conboy, JMU Journalism