The Pohl Group will train behavioral threat assessment teams from Greenville City Schools and Arcanum Schools on Thursday, Aug. 19 at the Arcanum Community Building.
The Pohl Group, founded by retired Department of Defense, FBI Task Force Special Agent and Arcanum native, Mark Pohl, specializes in investigation services, corporate risk management solutions, and emergency management training.
Due to a law set in place last year, every school in Ohio is required to install a trained, behavioral threat assessment team to prevent violence in schools by 2023. Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost offers a free, online behavioral threat assessment training that lasts about three hours as an alternative to The Pohl Group’s services. Schools can also use Ohio School Safety Training Grant funds to pay for outside training from companies like The Pohl Group.
In the past, training related to school violence was based around the premise that the violence had already started. The training courses usually only focus on emergency medical support and recovery after the violence. Pohl said the missing piece has always been violence prevention.
“How do we get in front of it?” He said. “Most of our training has focused on how to respond to it. If it happens, what should you do? There are some behavioral psychologists that know some of this stuff but the ability to take a complaint and do what they call a threat assessment on that person, based on the science of how you do a threat assessment, whether or not you think that person is a threat to the organization. Its really something that’s been a government job.”
School Resource Officers and administration from Greenville and Arcanum will attend training on Thursday, and afterward they will make up the school threat assessment teams.
Pohl said this training brings the company’s experience back around full circle.
“I was a joint terrorist task force guy for 11 years, and all I did was assess risk,” he said. “I’d take a complaint, and do a threat assessment based to determine whether or not this person posed a threat to the community. What are they saying? Who are they hanging out with? What is their behavior like? What do they dress like? Are they radicalizing their ideas? Are they online? Who are they communicating with online? What are they saying? This threat assessment science is something we’ve done for a long time.”
While this training only includes Arcanum and Greenville Schools, Pohl said he is eager to train more schools in the surrounding communities.
“We want to work with as many county schools as we can,” Pohl said. “We want to help all the schools in Darke, Miami, Preble. The thing that’s exciting for me about it is, our company slogan is, “Together we can make a difference. Company slogans are often times corny, but for me that’s the only way it happens.”
For more information on their services contact The Pohl Group at 937-901-1244 or Mark.Pohl@ThePohlGroup.com.