ALERRT: The National Standard

The Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training (ALERRT) Center at Texas State University was created in 2002 as a partnership between the University, the San Marcos Police Department and the Hays County Sheriff’s Office to address the need for active shooter response training for first responders.  Using more than $40 million in state and federal grant funding in the last fourteen years, the ALERRT Center has trained more than 80,000 police officers nationwide in dynamic, force-on-force scenario-based training. In 2013, the FBI partnered with the ALERRT Center at Texas State and named ALERRT their standard for active shooter response training.  FBI Special Agents now instruct the ALERRT curriculum across the United States and Territories helping prepare state and local officers while establishing local partnerships with their law enforcement colleagues.

The ALERRT curriculum, developed after the tragedy at Columbine High School, has become the national standard in active shooter response training.  The first responders to the Fort Hood shootings on November 5, 2009 had been trained by ALERRT, and credited their swift and effective response on that day to the ALERRT training they had received.

From the 1966 Tower shooting at the University of Texas, to the coordinated terrorist attacks in Mumbai, India in 2008, to the Fort Hood shooting in 2009 and beyond, the best lesson learned is to be prepared. While we hope that such active shooter events will never happen in our backyards, the ALERRT staff at Texas State University has developed a new standard in active shooter response and law enforcement professionals across the nation are carrying this standard forward.   

In addition to in-depth after-action lessons learned through partnerships with agencies who have been involved in headline-making active shooter situations, ALERRT has created a criminal justice research department to evaluate and enhance the overall understanding of active shooter events and assist in improving law enforcement best practices.  

Beyond ALERRT, there are no training programs currently providing this vital training on a national level.  Similarly, there has not been a national standard for this critical response training before ALERRT.  While much of the training is delivered on-site in cities around the country, ALERRT also has a multimillion-dollar training facility in San Marcos for advanced active shooter response training. 

Utilizing the train-the-trainer model, the ALERRT curriculum has been adopted by numerous states and agencies as their standard active shooter training.  These states include Mississippi, Alabama, Oklahoma, Texas, Iowa, Louisiana, Maryland, Georgia, and Virginia, to name a few.  In addition, the New York City Police Department,  Miami Police Department, Dallas Police Department, Houston Police Department, San Antonio Police Department, Memphis Police Department, and the Atlanta Police Department are among the major cities across the nation, who have adopted the ALERRT curriculum as their standard. 

The ALERRT Center has developed and currently delivers nine (9), grant funded first responder courses across the nation.  These dynamic, scenario-based training courses are instructed by a cadre of subject matter expert adjunct instructors and ALERRT staff.  In addition, the ALERRT Center has organized and conducted five (5)) National Active Shooter Training Conferences providing training to police officers from across the country. The seventh Annual ALERRT Conference is slated for November 6-9, 2016 in San Marcos, Texas. See details here.

In addition to developing and delivering training courses to better prepare this country’s first-responders to effectively respond to acts of violence against its citizens, ALERRT also works with the Bureau of Justice Assistance, on initiatives such as Preventing Violence Against Law Enforcement Officer Resilience and Survivability Initiative (VALOR) to stem the violence directed against the officers themselves. 

Texas State University  is a public, doctoral-granting institution located in San Marcos, Texas.  More than 36,000 students attend the University which offers 97 Bachelor Degrees, 87 Master’s Degree, and 12 Doctoral degree programs.  In 2011, the U.S. Department of Education granted Texas State University official recognition as a Hispanic Serving Institution (HIS).  In addition, the Texas Higher Coordinating Board recently reclassified the University as an Emerging Research University. 

For more information about ALERRT, please contact:
Diana Hendricks, Director of Communications
Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training
Texas State University | San Marcos
1251 Sadler Dr. Suite 200 • San Marcos, Texas 78666
Office – 512.245.4779  | Cell – 512.618.3373