MT. PLEASANT—School board members learned that new training is coming to teachers, students and parents, as announced in a board meeting last Tuesday, July 19.
The district will have a strong emphasis on school safety for the next school year, and are implementing training for teachers, students and parents prepared by the “I Love U Guys Foundation.”
A full day of training will be held on Monday, Aug. 8 at the Mt. Pleasant Elementary. The school will be used to stage various emergency scenarios such as active shooter, outside threats, lockdowns and evacuations.
“All district employees need to use the same language in a crisis situation for safety of parents, students, and the community,” Superintendent Nan Ault said.
The protocols developed by the foundation are used in over 30,000 schools and create common and consistent language among educators, communities, and first responding agencies. Depending on the circumstances, a protocol may be implemented without any school functions being disrupted, while others may necessitate changes in dismissal times and might involve local emergency services.
Here are the major protocols:
1. HOLD is initiated when there is a safety concern in the hallways of the building. A Hold is used when it is nec- essary to restrict movement within the school or building. Examples that may prompt a Hold being called include a medical emergency or a physical altercation occurring in the hallway.
2. SECURE is initiated when there is a threat outside the building. A Secure is implemented due to emergency situations that take place in the neighborhood close to the schools. Examples that may prompt a Secure being called include a bank robbery near a school, police activity, or a dangerous animal in the area.
3. LOCKDOWN is used when there is an active threat or dangerous incident on the campus. Students and staff must find immediate shelter inside the nearest classroom as quickly as possible. Staff and students will lock doors and turn out the lights, stay out of the line of sight and gather in a space so someone in the hallway couldn’t see them when looking through a doorway, huddle behind large items for extra protection and may consider barricading the doorway if it can be done quickly. They will be very quiet and prepared to move quickly when instructed.
4. EVACUATE is used to get students and staff out of the building by a route designed to avoid contact with a potential threat, such as a suspicious package, a threat- ening person in a specific confined area, a bomb threat, or a hazardous material spill. An Evacuation protects staff and students from a threat where exact locations of danger are known.
5. SHELTER is issued for severe weather or hazardous material incidents. A Shelter directive is used to relocate students to a safe area away from a potential weather or HAZMAT-related danger. Parents are strongly encouraged to know how to react to crisis situations. They should make sure their contact preferences in PowerSchool are accurate and that they have selected to receive text and email messages from the district.
Parents can also monitor the NSSD website for updates and instructions. In an effort to reduce confusion and the spread of misinformation, NSSD will usually post information and updates on the website once information is confirmed as accurate.
The district’s first priority is to make sure students and staff are safe and that their needs are being met. Then, once the district has accurate information, it will be shared with parents.
The next board meeting will be Aug. 9.