The CHAT Chime In: Tuesday’s False Alarm


The CHAT Newspaper

   Given the lockdown false alarm that occurred on March 7, 2023, the CHAT offers our peers a sense of support and guidance through these uncertain times. With this “Chime In,” we hope to provide tranquility and relatability to Pines Charter students, teachers, staff, and families.


   “This was actually my first time hearing the intimidating siren—I was outside school grounds the last two times this happened. Though scary, my classmates and I remained calm and followed the procedures outlined by our teacher. I’m incredibly grateful we came out okay, and only hope we can recover and remain strong.” Daniel Morrison, Junior


   “Noticing how my classmates and I were prepared for the code red to the point that we had the door and class protected within the first 5 minutes showed me that we, as students, are adapting to a new world. Being supportive of each other goes a long way, and we proved that to be true during the events of it.” Marko Barrera, Senior


   “Even though the code red was genuinely really scary and I personally was super anxious, I realize now how easily tensions were able to be eased with such a calming classroom. My classmates and I were all in the same boat, all scared, but just the fact that we were all together helped me feel better. I’m super glad the people in my class were prepared had anything happened and were able to make the environment comforting despite the situation.”

Rebekah Barrera, Junior


“While what happened yesterday was obviously really scary and confusing, what impacted me the most yesterday was the way my classmates reacted. Everyone in my class was prepared, resilient, and looking out for one another. It’s times like these where the best of people comes out, and I think I really saw that yesterday.” Isabella Cely-Garcia, Junior


“Being in a room with my classmates made the code red experience less intense. Even though what we were all going through was shocking and terrifying, we were experiencing it all together, and I’m grateful we are all okay.” Brielle Gari, Sophomore


“I was a little bit anxious; however, I made sure to keep a positive mentality and tell myself that everything was going to be okay. I think it’s so important to be calm and be positive in these certain situations.” Lucas Giron, Senior


“The code red was an anxiety-inducing experience for sure, but what struck me the most was how my friends and I were able to support each other through it. We were all shaking, but we still managed to get each other through it, and I’ll forever be grateful for that.” 

Anaum Hussain, Senior


“At first, I was confused, and when I looked around, I could see that my classmates also were. But when the realization hit of what was happening, everyone started to take precautions. Closing the windows, piling the desk and heavy objects on the door, and taking cover at the safety spot. After a few minutes, everyone settled down and started comforting each other. I definitely appreciate my classmates and especially my teacher for making sure everyone was okay and well.” Alexandra Kouropteva, Sophomore


“I was definitely more calm yesterday than the previous two times. While it’s sad to say that, it proves that as a school, we can overcome fear and come together in situations like these. In my class, students took the lead, pushing tables and stacking chairs against the door, and moving to our designated safe area. It comforted me knowing how prepared we were and knowing that I can count on my peers for safety.” Marissa Levinson, Junior 


I remember looking up at my classroom’s clock and it suddenly changing to red, before I actually heard anything. My teacher, Mr. Maye, and the students in my class immediately jumped into action, pushing tables towards the door, flipping them to use as shields, and helping each other get down and away from the door and the walls. When the alarm first went off, I was panicking but after a few minutes, I tried to reassure myself by thinking it was another false alarm. It’s honestly sad that teenagers are this well-trained, ready to face whatever threat. However, at the end of the day, I’m glad everyone is safe, if not a little shaken. On my way out of school, I noticed friend groups reuniting and hugging, and I did the same with my friends. I also heard teachers speaking about their experiences with their classes and it seemed like, for the most part, everyone was well-prepared and took the code red seriously. I have faith that our Charter community will recuperate and support each other after yesterday’s events, as we always have before. Senior Rebecca Lim 


 “As this has happened a few times, I felt more composed in the moment and i’m proud of the people in my class for taking the proper action in the heat of the moment. I hope everyone is feeling better about the situation, while these false alarms shouldn’t happen in the first place, it’s comforting and reliving to know that we are all prepared in case a real emergency were to happen.” Senior Adam Abougendia


“I was in Ms. Phelps’s class, and we were reading Hamlet when the alarm went off. I didn’t know what was happening, and was really confused. But before I knew it, I was sitting against the wall, the lights were off, and the windows were closed. I’m really thankful we have lockdown drills, because it drilled the correct procedures into my brain. I did everything subconsciously, even though I didn’t know what was happening. The alarm went off from my sister’s classroom in the middle school, and I was really worried about her. I’m super grateful it was just a false alarm, and I feel secure knowing how fast the police departments responded in case of a real event.” Junior Iris Lee


“I appreciate how quickly the first responders got to our campus helping take control of the situation and reassuring that there was no actual threat on campus. When I realized that it had been a false alarm, I was incredibly relieved.” Samantha Miragliotta, Senior


“Given that this was not the first alarming accident, I was [at least] fortunate to say that my teachers and peers were prepared. It seemed like second nature, even though it shouldn’t, but I had confidence that everything would be okay. I appreciate how communicative our school was and how quickly the first responders arrived.” Valerie Questell, Junior


“I was in the theater when I heard the alarm, at first I was confused but then I saw the people’s faces around me, some of them were confused as well but mostly looks of terror. This hasn’t been my first time when it comes to alarms like this but this time was different, I saw everyone switch into survival mode. I believe that the students have become more aware and understanding of situations like this, and because of that, I think that this school has become more protected in a way. I hope that in the future, we stay as prepared and ready for problems as extreme as this. I’m glad that the people around me were comforting their classmates as this is a very high-stress and frightening experience.” Olivia Ramos, Senior


“Although the code red yesterday was a scary experience, I knew that the school would do everything to keep us safe, and it was so relieving to hear the police sirens. Thankfully everyone is okay, and it was a false alarm, but in the case of a real emergency I would feel prepared to stay strong, and I know that everyone will have each others’ backs.” Alexia Rivera, Sophomore


“Hearing the alarm and watching my classmates prepare for the lockdown was intense, but I’m glad everyone knew what to do. With all of us sitting in a dark room for several minutes, we established a plan in case of attack. I felt safe, even though the circumstances were not clear at the moment. But at the end of the day, I’m grateful that everyone ended up okay, and we can all recover from what happened.” Kara Warren, Junior


“The code red was very scary, but I was very calm and thankful that my class was able to let in the people stuck in the bathroom, and I was glad that they were all safe” 

Alexandra Williams, Junior


“Yesterday was a really big scare for the whole school as a whole, and I think we really saw how lucky we are that our school takes these situations very seriously. This reminded us of all the unfortunate possibilities and that we should remain grateful for the school community we have.”

Julianna Perez, sophomore


“I think that as it was my first code red, yes it was very scary and abrupt, but I loved how everyone made sure everyone was ok. Here at Pines Charter it is important that everyone helps each other! I love how every one was hugging each other in this hard time. That alone made me feel more calm and safe. As though many people don’t want to remember this time I am glad that our school handles this situation very well.” Marlee Jaworski, freshman


“It was a foreign feeling to be feeling calm under a moment of such stress and pressure as if I was in some sort of shock that I  couldn’t shake off. I’m really thankful for how my teacher and classmates reacted quickly and effectively. Sitting together in the dark, I felt comforted knowing that as a group we were dealing with this together, and that we would do everything in our power to keep each other safe. It was a moment where I felt truly connected with everyone.”

Sophia Lopez, Junior


“When the code red happened, I was on high alert, but I assumed that it wasn’t real because of previous experiences. As the alert went on, I rushed to the back of the dark room and waited there with students I’d never talked to but still felt very close to at the same time. we waited till it was over, and it felt like a weight was lifted off. overall I’m glad it was over, and nothing happened. Yarah Almoshaikah, Senior


“I was very scared but I’m glad nothing bad happened. I’m glad police came quick I know I’m in good hands.” Carlos Mendez, Junior


“It’s very alarming and scary when these false code reds happen, to students, family, faculty, and friends. Since so many things are happening at once, it can create either unity or chaos with peers. There needs to be a change, many people can wind up hurt or with trauma. Sadly, It just is what It Is, but hopefully it helps us become faster assessing any dangerous situations.” 

Jessica Rodriguez, Senior


“Even though I had assumed it was most likely a false alarm it was still terrifying to even think about the possibility of the threat of death in school.” Dylan Padron, Senior


“I was with the softball team getting ready to board the bus to go to our game. Fortunately, nothing happened, but in general, I think it really brought my team and i closer as we all jumped in each other’s cars and left together. I am glad that the police responded quickly, and in general, it was taken seriously as it should have.” Megan Rasmussen, Senior


With love and support,


The CHAT Newspaper