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3110 - Emergency Preparedness

 General Administration/School Management Washington County School District - Adopted 8-79; Revised 12-92 and 12-96; Revised 6-19-18.


1. Purpose:

This policy provides a comprehensive resource regarding Emergency Preparedness Planning and Response in the Washington County School District (WCSD).

1.1. Utah State Law R277-400

1.2. Utah State Fire Code 15A Chapter 5 Section 202

1.3. I Love You Guys Foundation (http://iloveuguys.org)

  • Provides free materials including printable posters, graphics, and procedures that should be followed when faced with an emergency situation

1.4. WCSD Emergency Response Procedures

  • Multi-colored flipcharts provided in all classrooms as a reference and at washk12.org/risk/emergencypreparedness

2. Policy:

2.1. Pursuant to Utah State Law, each LEA shall establish an Emergency Preparedness Plan and review it with teachers, administrators, students and their parents, local law enforcement, and public safety representatives each year.

3. Procedure:

3.1. Definitions

3.1.1. Active Shooter Exercise
A drill or exercise wherein a school or facility utilizes simulated gunfire, mock weapons, or violence to give personnel experience to know how to react in the event of an active shooter emergency. These are not routine drills and must follow the protocols outlined in Administrative Letter 131.

3.1.2. Emergency Preparedness Plan
Developed by an LEA or school to prepare and protect students and staff in the event of school violence emergencies. Templates are available at washk12.org/risk/emergencypreparedness

3.1.3. Emergency Preparedness Planning and Response Committee (EPPR)
A committee consisting of teachers, administrators, students and their parents, local law enforcement, and public safety representatives that convenes regularly to certify that Emergency Preparedness Plans are being practiced, presented to and reviewed by LEA’s. The Committee also reviews and makes recommendations regarding emergency preparedness and security needs at schools.

3.1.4. Fire (Evacuation)
Called to move students and staff from one location to another.

3.1.5. LEA
Local Education Agency

3.1.6. Lockdown
Called when there is a threat or hazard inside of the building.

3.1.7. Lockout
Called when there is a threat or hazard outside of the building.

3.1.8. Reunification
Includes preparing procedures and standards for how to reunite students with parents in an orderly manner when school is released at an irregular time due to an emergency, lockdown and/or lockout. Reunifications are generally conducted in conjunction with Lockdowns or Lockouts.

3.1.9. Shelter
Called when the need for personal protection is necessary. Examples of relevant hazards may include but are not limited to earthquakes, hazardous materials, and other natural disasters.

3.2. Emergency Preparedness Plans:

3.2.1. Shall contain measures that assure that school children will receive emergency preparedness training. 

3.2.2. School children shall be provided with training appropriate to their ages in safety measures appropriate for specific emergencies, and other emergency skills.

3.2.3. Should be on file in the office of the principal and the School District office. It shall be updated annually, and as the need arises due to structural changes, employment turnover, etc.

3.2.4. Principals shall review the Emergency Plan with staff at the beginning of each year.

3.2.5. Each LEA shall review the plan(s) at least once every three years with the Emergency Preparedness Planning and Response Committee (EPPR)

3.3. Safety Drills

3.3.1. Drills that may be performed in LEAs include but are not limited to the following:

  • Fire
  • Lockdown for violence
  • Lockout
  • Shelter in place
  • Family reunification
  • Bomb threat
  • Civil Disturbance
  • Flood
  • Hazardous Material spill
  • Utility failure
  • Severe weather
  • Shelter and mass care
  • Other drills that may be appropriate for a school’s particular location

3.3.2. Administrators are encouraged to periodically perform drills during non-instructional time such as during lunch, between classes, etc.

3.3.3. Frequency

3.3.3.1. Elementary Schools:

3.3.3.1.1. Elementary schools shall conduct fire drills every other month starting in August.

3.3.3.1.2. The first fire drill must be held in the first 10 days of the school year.

3.3.3.1.3. Elementary schools shall perform another type of safety drill on the months that fire drills are not conducted. Schools may select from the drills listed in section 4.2.1 of this policy.

3.3.3.1.4. Elementary schools will complete 10 safety drills total (one each month) throughout the course of the school year.

3.3.3.2. Secondary Schools

3.3.3.2.1. Secondary schools shall conduct fire drills once a quarter starting in August.

3.3.3.2.2. The first fire drill must be held in the first 10 days of the school year

3.3.3.2.3. Secondary schools shall conduct a fire drill in the first 10 days of the calendar year.

3.3.3.2.4. Secondary schools may substitute the fire drills in the second and fourth quarter with another type of safety drill. Schools may select from the drills listed in section 4.2.1 of this policy

3.3.3.2.5. Secondary schools will complete a minimum of 4 safety drills total (one per quarter) throughout the course of the school year

3.3.4. Execution

3.3.4.1. During all safety drills, attendance should be taken at the beginning of class, and again after the drill has concluded.

3.3.4.2. Drills should occasionally be conducted before or after school, during lunchtime or between classes.

3.3.4.3. Fire (Evacuation)

3.3.4.3.1. Fire drills shall include the complete evacuation of all persons from the school building or the portion of the building used for educational purposes (R277-400-6D(1)).

3.3.4.3.2. Students are not to bring personal items like backpacks during an evacuation. Personal items must be left behind.

3.3.4.3.3. Reasonable Delay

  • When a fire alarm sounds, students should stand and stage themselves to evacuate the building in an orderly manner. It is appropriate for staff members to briefly delay evacuation to verify that the alarm was not pulled in order to draw staff and students out of the safety of their classrooms.
  • Unless a staff member has reason to believe that the alarm was pulled to draw staff and students from the safety of their classrooms, facilities must always be evacuated when a fire alarm sounds.

3.3.4.3.4. Fire alarms are for use during fire drills and fire emergencies.  They should not be utilized for non-fire emergencies.

3.3.4.4. Lockdown

3.3.4.4.1. The following announcement should be made over the PA system: “Lockdown! Locks, lights, out of sight”

3.3.4.4.2. Classroom doors must be locked, lights must be turned off, and windows should be covered.

3.3.4.4.3. Hallway doors (not to be confused with classroom doors) should latch, but not lock so as to allow law enforcement the ability to access all parts of the building.

3.3.4.4.4. Students and staff are gathered to an interior wall out of sight.

3.3.4.4.5. Staff and students must remain quiet.

3.3.4.4.6. Unless otherwise instructed, bells, alarms, PA announcements and knocking on classroom doors should be ignored.

3.3.4.4.7. Schools are strongly encouraged to partner with law enforcement when conducting lockdown drills.

3.3.4.4.8. No one should be allowed in or out of the classroom until a uniformed policeman or school administrator opens the door.

3.3.4.5. Lockout

3.3.4.5.1. The following announcement should be made over the PA system: “Lockout! Secure the perimeter.”

3.3.4.5.2. Students must be moved inside of the building.

3.3.4.5.3. Classroom doors should be locked.

3.3.4.5.4. All exterior doors must be locked, and access into or out of the school must be restricted.

3.3.4.5.5. Continue with normal activities as much as the situation allows, but no one should be permitted to leave the building’s interior until the lockout has been lifted.

3.3.4.6. Reunification

3.3.4.6.1. Establish a Parent Check-In Location.

3.3.4.6.2. Deliver the students to the student staging area, beyond the field of vision of parents/guardians. “Greeters” direct parents/guardians to the Parent check-In location, and help them understand the process.

3.3.4.6.3. Parents/guardians complete Reunification Cards.

3.3.4.6.4. Procedure allows parents/guardians to self-sort during check in, streamlining the process.

3.3.4.6.5. Runner recovers student from the student staging area and reunites student and parent at the reunification area.

3.3.4.6.5. Additional information, including reunification written material, are available at http://iloveuguys.org

3.3.4.7. Shelter

3.3.4.7.1. The following announcement should be made over the PA system: “Shelter for ­­­(type) and (method)”

3.3.4.7.2. Earthquake/Severe Weather

  • The following announcement should be made over the PA system; “Shelter for earthquake! Drop, cover, and hold.
  • Staff and students should drop to the ground and cover under a desk or table until the earthquake is over.

3.3.4.7.3. Shelter drills are not limited to earthquake preparedness. These drills may also be used to practice emergency preparedness skills for most natural disasters.

3.3.5.Tracking

3.3.5.1. Completion of school safety drills are to be recorded on Google Spreadsheets provided to each school. Each school may access their individual sheets by going to the following web address: go.washk12.org/(school number)_ drills (Example: go.washk12.org/130_ drills).

3.3.5.2. Personnel may need to request access to view the spreadsheet from Risk Management.


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