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EBRP District Crisis Policy


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  • 1. East Baton Rouge Parish School System District Crisis Policy Charlotte D. Placide Superintendent of Schools 1050 South Foster Drive Baton Rouge, LA 70806
  • 2. 2007 District Crisis Policy for East Baton Rouge Parish School System PUR P O S E • To develop an Emergency Preparedness Plan this assures the protection and safe care of students and staff before, during, or immediately after a threatened or actual emergency or disaster. • To prepare personnel and students in every student and non-student site to take appropriate action in the event of a natural, technological, or security emergency or disaster. • To prepare school personnel for their role in coordinating with the local emergency management agency to integrate the school district facilities and resources into the community’s overall emergency preparedness. Ov e r v i e w and Rati o n a l e Overview East Baton Rouge Public Schools has developed procedures for dealing with existing and potential student and school crises. The District Policy includes Definitions, Crisis Management Team, Crisis Management Plan and Crisis Management In-Service. Rationale East Baton Rouge Parish School System District Crisis Policy procedures provide benefits for students, parents, and the school district. The policy provides an organized, systematic method for helping students, staff and the community. Crisis Team members operate within specific guidelines to make collaborative decisions, sharing the responsibility of these often difficult, stressful situations. Parents and other members of the community are assured that the school 2
  • 3. district has established procedures which provide for needed intervention with troubled personnel/students and better prepare sites to respond to crises. POLI CY School Board Policy Statement A comprehensive approach to a district’s safety is to place a strong emphasis on prevention using strategies which range from building design to discipline policies and programs which improve school climate. Crisis management is a part of that approach which anticipates potential problems and establishes a coordinated response to minimize stress and provide a safe and secure plan. Crisis Management Components A. Definitions 1. “Crisis” is a traumatic event that seriously disrupts our coping and problem-solving abilities. It is typically unpredicted, volatile in nature and may even threaten our survival. A crisis can present a drastic and tragic change in our environment. This change is generally unwanted and frightening, and may leave us with a sense of vulnerability and helplessness. 2. “Crisis Management” it that part of a school district’s approach to school safety which focuses more narrowly on a time-limited, problem-focused intervention to identify, confront and resolve the crisis, restore equilibrium, and support appropriate adaptive responses. 3. “Critical incidents” shall include situations involving threats of harm to students, personnel, or facilities. Critical incidents include but are not limited to natural disasters, fire, use of weapons/explosives, and the taking of hostages. Such incidents require an interagency response involving law enforcement and/or emergency services agencies. 4. The individual district “Crisis Management Plan” shall be a written plan with explicit intent to protect and sustain life, reduce emotional trauma, assist in emotional recovery from trauma, and minimize personal injury and/or damage to the facility. 3
  • 4. B. District Crisis Management Team Leadership from the School Board and the Superintendent is crucial in developing a District Crisis Management Plan. The goal of the plan is the safety and well being of all students and staff, and this goal must be embedded in policies and procedures at both the district level and the building level. 1. Membership: The crisis team shall consist of an immediately accessible core group who have the knowledge and skills to act in any emergency and shall include, Superintendent Chief Academic Officer, Associate Superintendent of Instructional Support Services, Director of Security, Chief Business Operations Officer, General Counsel, Director for Communications and Community Engagement, Chief Technology Officer, Administrative Director of Facilities, Chief of Police, EBR Sheriff designee , the Sheriff Department (School Resource Officer, or other person designated by the Sheriff and a person to record events/minutes of meetings. A roster of team members will be posted in each school administration office. 2. Purposes: The District Crisis Team shall implement and adapt appropriate action from the District Crisis Policy to address the specific events of the crisis. Roles and responsibilities of team members and consultants will be established in the district’s written Crisis Policy. C. District Crisis Management Plan The District Crisis Policy will include provisions for Preparedness, Response, Recovery, and Mitigation including the establishment or designation of the following: Preparedness 1. Provide explicit procedures for each crisis incident. 2. Crisis headquarters, located in Conference Room A, Central Office. Command post for security personnel and school personnel are located outside the site in the event evacuation is necessary. Response 1. Follow the chain of command in the event a key administrator is not available. (Refer to page 6) 2. Director of Community Relations will relay information to the Superintendent/media. Spokesperson to the media. At the school site this person will be the principal or designee and is responsible for gathering and confirming all pertinent information about the incident and for informing the school system’s public information officer prior to any media release. The spokesperson will also designate a media reception area when deemed appropriate. 3. The key communicator(s) will notify staff of emergency incidents and special meetings which may occur before or after school hours and various counselors 4
  • 5. designated to support groups such as students, faculty, and parents. Recovery 1. Following a crisis communication with teachers should occur as soon as possible. When appropriate, well-informed representatives should be ready to the site. Avoid giving news via assembly or public address systems as results can be unpredictable when giving shocking news to large groups of students. To ensure accuracy and avoid rumor, information to students must come directly from internal memoranda or statements written specifically for that purpose and approved by the principal. Questions from parents should also be addressed from pre-approved fact sheet. 2. Arrangement for support services will be conducted by one individual from the Crisis Management Team. This person will be designated to contact others community resources such as I-CARE. The I-CARE office will arrange for assistance as needed from additional school psychologists, school social workers, and other guidance counselors. 3. Once an incident is over and recovery has begun it is imperative to recognize officially the end of the crisis and the beginning of the healing process. Mitigation 1. Evaluation of the crisis plan. Response to each crisis incident will be reviewed and evaluated at the conclusion of each crisis. The District Crisis Management Team annually will evaluate the plan and its effectiveness and make modifications as needed. D. District Crisis Management In-service The District Crisis Policy shall be reviewed and revised as needed annually with the full District Crisis Management Team and shared with all school principals, site administrators, transient staff, nurse/clinic attendants, secretaries, cafeteria staff, custodians, and bus drivers. Schools are encouraged to provide in-service/review on specific crisis related topics such as substance abuse code violations, neglect and abuse, and suicide prevention. 5
  • 6. “A coordinated district-wide crisis response is no accident. It reflects prevention, intervention, and rehearsed reaction.” Educational Leadership Approved by School Board ________________; effective_______________. Central Office Crisis Planning and Response Team Responsibilities Assigned Roles for District Management Team during a Student & Non-student Site Emergency School Board Members • Keep in direct contact with the Superintendent • Assist Superintendent Superintendent • Direct all operations of the division in the management of the emergency. • Gather information from all aspects of the emergency for use in making appropriate decisions about the management of the emergency. • Assess the emergency situation and assign tasks based on the overall needs for managing the emergency. • Direct all activities of division and school staff in the management of the emergency. • Stay in contact with the leaders of the emergency service agencies and the law enforcement agencies working with the emergency. • Authorize the release of information to the public. • Keep School Board informed of emergency status. • The Chief Academic Officer will assist Superintendent and serve in this capacity in the absence of the Superintendent. Chief Academic Officer • From the division offices, direct all division office staff. • Establish and maintain lines of communication between the division and the 6
  • 7. emergency site; for off campus emergency, lines of communication must be established for the involved school, as well. Such lines of communication may also include couriers. • Manage the professional and non-professional staff from the district office. • Assign resources (persons and materials) to various sites for specific needs. • Communicate with other schools in the division during the emergency period. • Arrange for the delivery of outside services and materials needed for the management of the emergency. • Handle overflow telephone calls at the emergency site. • Make recommendations regarding the restarting of school activities from support services. Associate Superintendent, Instructional Support Services • Establish and implement plan for crisis; form and coordinate crisis teams with Lead Psychologist. • Maintain active file of helping agencies within the community; the names of contact person will be included. • Develop schedule for activities for the first day of school following the crisis with support services. • Maintain follow-up activities such as referrals for help outside the school services setting. (I-CARE) • Report immediately to the local hospital if students or adults are being sent to that hospital for treatment. If more than one hospital is admitting students or adults, coordinate communication among those hospitals and the division. Assign and direct other division staff to assist in those hospitals. • Coordinate communication between the hospital and the division office. • Develop plan and scenarios in which division technological resources can be dispersed effectively to emergency sites. • Serve as a liaison between the emergency school site and the emergency support teams that may be needed. • Coordinate and direct communication between the emergency site and county and state agencies. Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources • Provide a current and accurate list of teachers and staff. • Provide personal information on individuals at site. • Provide a list of substitutes at site for the day. Legal Counsel • Provide legal advice • Identify compliance of local statures • Provide counsel station to litigation liability Chief Business Operations Officer 7
  • 8. • Plan and initiate arrangements for food for building personnel. • Notify risk management of emergency. • Coordinate with director of transportation as needed. • Arrange for the payment of monies needed to respond to emergency situations; authorize purchases and payments for such resources. • Activate ConnectEd to alarm emergency stand-by bus drivers. Assistant Superintendent, for site in crisis • Meet and talk with the parents of students and spouses of adults who have been admitted to the hospital. • Create letters to notify parents of continuing care that is available to students; available care will include local and state agencies, as well as school-based care. • Coordinate secondary evacuation site and dismissal of students. Director of Security • Inform all law enforcement agencies of the crisis, location and type of crisis. • Coordinate and work closely with Supervisor of Security. • Ensure that the perimeter of the school or facility in question is secure and that the school is locked down. • Make sure that the members of the district crisis team are notified. • Give update when applicable about the on going crisis situation • Oversee the successful evacuation from the school to the secondary evacuation site. • Coordinate and direct contact with emergency medical services, local police and sheriff’s departments, fire departments, and the highway patrol. • Coordinate and direct search-and-rescue operations when needed. • Assign deputy to superintendent for direct communication of crisis activity. Healthcare • Implement state and district school health requirements. • Identify and minimize hazards in the school environment. • Give medical advice to Superintendent regarding individualized school health services. • Give consultation regarding medication administration. • Provide roster of identified students with medical needs. Administrative Director – Facility Management • Obtain and direct the placement of generators when power must be restored for a temporary period. 8
  • 9. • Coordinate and direct the acquisition of water when there is a disruption of water and sewer services. • Develop, maintain and distribute to each school a current floor plan depicting mechanical cut off switch values. • Obtain building plans for site in crisis. Chief Technology Officer • Supervise the use of the school computer system for communication with the district office and electronic bulletin board system. • As needed, report various sites involved in the communication system if there are problems in that system. • Provide technical support for all communications hardware and software. • House pre-recorded message to parents from principals as to the secondary site location. • Provide comprehensive student/teacher class list with addresses and phone numbers for secondary site. Director for Communications and Community Engagement • Live media updates will be held at the EBR Central Office. • Collect and disseminate information to the media. Be aware of deadlines, the need for information accuracy, and other issues related to the media and the performance of their jobs. • Plan and coordinate press interviews to help the news media meet deadlines. • Create and disseminate press releases. • Respond to rumors through the dissemination of accurate information. • Be aware of the requirements of the Freedom of Information Act and provide all appropriate information based on those requirements. • Plan and coordinate the use of the Division’s cable television channel for live and taped presentations. Press conferences can go out live; updates for the public can be taped and aired as needed. • Coordinate information to be shared with school and division personnel during and after the crisis. • Act as a liaison between the media and division personnel whose attention must be focused on the immediate problems of managing the crisis without constant interruption. • Arrange interviews for the media with key school and division staff who are involved in the emergency or who act as spokespersons for the division. • Establish and maintain a clearinghouse for calls and requests from schools, the community, parents, and the media and refer those to the appropriate person or place. Principals/Site Managers 9
  • 10. • Be familiar with central office support available to principals and site managers • Make school crisis plan, crisis management handbook, and emergency management kit readily available to appropriate staff. • Remain at respective schools until the end of the school day. • When all students and staff members have left campus for the day, be prepared to report to the Assistant Superintendent for Instructional Support Services in writing. • Perform tasks assigned by the Assistant Superintendent for Instructional Support Service. • Maintain active file of community persons, such as counselors, doctors, psychologists, ministers; information regarding services and follow-up services will be included. • Develop information sheet for parents, teachers, and others; information will include topics such as talking with students, signs of depression, and others relating to crisis stress. • Report immediately to the local hospital if students or adults are being sent to that hospital for treatment. If more than one hospital is admitting students or adults, coordinate communication among those hospitals and the division. Assign and direct other division staff to assist in those hospitals. C E N T R A L O F F I C E C R I S I S TE A M RO S T E R Ch ai n of Co m m a n d Position/Role Name e-mail Work Phone Fax Cell Phone / Home Phone Pager Superintendent Chief Academic Officer* Ass. Supt. Inst. Support Services** Director of Human Resource** Legal Counsel Chief Business Operations Officer Asst. Supt. Area I Asst. Supt. Area II Asst. Supt. Area III Asst. Supt. Area IV Asst. Supt for Accountability 10
  • 11. Director of Security Health Care Director Facility Director Chief Tech. Officer Director for Communications and Community Engagement *Designee in the event the Superintendent is not available **Next in Command in the absence of the designee NOTE: Positions are listed in order of command. Responsibilities are given by job title. 11
  • 12. D is t r ic t C r is is Ma n a g e me n t Or g a n z a t io n a l C h a r t School Board ER B Superintendent P lic & S riff De a e o e he p rtm nt Instructional Support Services Human Resource Chief Academic Officer In-House Security Operations & Budget Management (OBM) Assistant Superintendents Technology/ Legal Department Informational Services Community Relations Le rship at thece ade ntral o le l is critical tothesucce ffice ve ssful manage e o scho l e e ncie m nt f o m rge s. 12
  • 13. References Kentucky Board of Education, Jefferson County Public Schools Crisis Management Plan. (2004-05). Louisville, Kentucky: Kentucky Department of Education Lerner, M., Volpe, J., Lindell, B. (2003), Partical Guide for Crisis Response in Our Schools. Fifth Edition. The American Academy of Experts in Traumatic Stress. New York. Virginia Board of Education. (1999). Model School Crisis Plan. Richmond, VA: Virginia Department of Education
  • 14. State of Louisiana Crisis Management/Emergency Response Plan Response and Management Plans: RS 17:416.16 (2001) requires each school principal to prepare a school crisis response management and response plan in accordance with school board policy. The plan shall be devised with input from students enrolled in the school, and their parents, teachers at the school, other school employees, community leaders, local law enforcement, and fire, public safety, and emergency preparedness officials. Each school is to submit a plan in writing to the school board for approval. The plan must be reviewed annually and revised as necessary. Reporting Incidents of Violence: RS 14:95.2 (1999) determines that if a student is detained by the principal or other school official for carrying or possessing a firearm or dangerous weapon on school property or the school principal or other school official confiscates or seizes a firearm or concealed weapon from a student while on school property, at school function, or on a school bus, the principal or other school official in charge at the time shall immediately report the detention or seizure to the police department or sheriff's department where the school is located and shall deliver any firearm or weapon seized to that agency. RS 17:416 (2003) requires each school board to adopt procedures allowing teachers or other school employees to report incidents of discipline violations to the principal. RS 17:252 (2003) also requires each school district to develop and submit a master plan for supporting student behavior and discipline that may include providing for better and more useful reporting of school behavioral and disciplinary problems annually. RS 17:416.13 deems any school employee, or school volunteer, who in good faith reports an incident of harassment, intimidation, or bullying to the appropriate school officials in accordance with local board policy immune from liability for damages arising from failure to remedy the reported incident.