During an emergency, the safety of students and staff is our top priority. In order to provide an effective response to any school crisis, emergency plans are in place for each school and we work in conjunction with local agencies to plan for, respond and to communicate during emergency events.
In the event of an earthquake, students will be instructed to drop and cover. Drop and cover follows this process: drop to the ground, take cover by getting under a sturdy desk or table, and hold onto it until the shaking stops. Evacuation will proceed as outlined in the School Emergency Preparedness Guide. Earthquake drills are practiced a minimum of twice per year at each grade level.
In the event of a fire within a school, the fire alarm will be sounded by the person discovering the fire. Students will be evacuated from the building using the nearest safe exit and will assemble at a predetermined location where attendance will be taken and the names of missing students and their possible location are reported to the Principal. Fire drills are practiced on a regular basis, once per month at elementary and every two months at middle and secondary.
Hold & Secure
A ‘hold & secure’ should be used when it is desirable to secure the school due to an ongoing situation outside the school and not related to the school (e.g. a robbery occurs near a school, a cougar has been sighted in the neighbourhood). In this situation, the school continues to function normally, with the exterior doors being locked until such time as the situation near the school is resolved.
A ‘lockdown’ is only be used when there is a major incident or threat of school violence within the school, or in relation to the school. The school will follow the established lockdown procedures. Parents should wait for information from the school district before coming to the school. Lockdown drills are practiced at the school, at least one per year, and include the school liaison officer.
Critical Incident Response Team
The Critical Incident Response Team (CIRT) provides support to schools and families in dealing with critical incidents through a provision of expertise, resources and additional counseling. The team will develop an action plan in response to a critical incident and may invite the district CIRT to provide further support.
Violence Threat Risk Assessment
Fair Notice, from time to time it may be necessary to complete a Violence Threat Risk Assessment (VTRA) in response to threatening behavior toward students or staff. To ensure the safety of students, staff, parents and others, threats must be taken seriously, investigated and responded to. The VTRA will allow the school to plan the interventions necessary to prevent traumatic events in schools.