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People in Central Illinois are preparing for the worst

MORTON, Ill - School shootings are sweeping the nation leaving some feeling vulnerable and others determined to make a change.

A local effort from Central Illinois is helping people with questions, find their answers.

Now more than ever teachers are worried about a shooting happening in their school. That's why some teachers like Patty Meiner are taking a class to learn how to best defend against a school shooting situation.

Meiner is a teacher at one of East Peoria’s schools. She says, "I think that a lot of us have stepped things up just a little bit more taking it one step further, but like I said, my kids now we get up and my kids immediately barricade the door."

This makes the 8th class that's asked for guidance from Brian Wood, and he thinks it's worth it. He says, "It is unfortunate that we have to have a class like this. It's unfortunate that I have to teach concealed carry. It's unfortunate that we have to have police officers, but that's the world we live in."

It's not just teachers that are worried. Churches have recently fallen victim to mass shootings too.

Keith Hoerr is a board member at his church. He says, "We've been pretty lax over the years. You know we think we're a sanctuary, we let people come in. People think they're safe in church and the reality is you're not safe anywhere."

Hoerr hopes to bring information back to his church that will help keep them safe.

He says, "Bottom line is we wanna keep our people safe. My wife goes to that church. My kids are going to that church. We have little kids that go to that church. I want them to be safe. I wanna be able to have people come to our church and know that it's a safe place and we're doing everything in our power to protect them."

Meiner says, "I mean we're all here for the same reasons, because we either wanna protect our family, our co-workers, or our students."

Brian says he will continue to have these classes as long as there is still a need.

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