1 _"______ Guidelines of School Safety Plan for Safe Learning Environment 2011‐2012 Issued by ‐ District Administration, Dhanbad Government of Jharkhand Urban Risk Reduction Project Government of India and United Nations Development Programme
2 Forward Safe Learning Environment is something which every child is entitled to. But today, the bigger question in front of us is “Are we doing enough to give our children a safe learning environment or are we still waiting for a wake up call?” Times and again our nation has gone through the agony of loosing young school children in natural and manmade disasters within school premises, many of which would have been averted by simple prevention, mitigation and preparedness measures. The Gujarat earthquake that occurred on 26 January 2001 claimed 13,805 lives of which around 1/3rd were children. At least 1,884 school buildings collapsed and 5,950 classrooms were destroyed in that earthquake. A devastating fire claimed 94 lives of young children at the Sri Krishna Primary School in Kumbakonam (Tamil Nadu) on 16 July 2004. Around 17,000 children died and 2,448 schools collapsed in the 2005 Kashmir earthquake. We need to learn from the devastating incidents occurred in India over last few years. The District Administration, Dhanbad recognizes the role of schools in the community as being very important. In fact, it would be befitting to call schools cradles of the society. Children are a dynamic and powerful force of change and are supporters in creating awareness in the community. They can contribute in a unique manner with energy and vision to find local solutions. School children should be encouraged to take up tasks which make them realize their importance as necessary stakeholders in the process of change. In this regard, it becomes essential to encourage, aware and involve children and teachers in school safety planning process to ensure their own safety from any unforeseen disaster in school environment. This document has been prepared by the District Administration with a vision to make schools in Dhanbad safe from any kind of hazards and emphasizes on implementation of school safety programme by Government and Private Schools in the district. We thank Mr. Amit Shekhar, District Project Officer, UNDP for providing guidance in preparing this guidelines for schools. The School Safety Programme needs to be implemented by School Administration by active involvement of District Education Department, Teachers, Students and Staff Members of Schools in order to develop a culture of safety in our schools. We call upon the administration of all schools in Dhanbad for adopting and implementing the School Safety Programme in their respective schools towards providing safe learning environment to our children. We believe that this document will be helpful in guiding schools in preparing school safety plans, in following safe practices and mitigation measures. Sd/‐Deputy Commissioner Dhanbad
3 Terminologies Alarm: Is the advisory or signal that is given when an event is imminent or is occurring; the instructions which make up the family and community plans must be followed. Alert: State declared with the aim of carrying out specific actions given the probable, close or real occurrence of an event which can cause damage to the environment and losses both of human life and of material possessions. Capacity (C): Combination of all strengths and resources available within a community, society or organization which can reduce the level of risk or the effects of an event or disaster. Disaster: Serious interruption of the functioning of a community or society which causes loss of human life and/or significant material, economic or environmental losses; which exceed the capacity of the community or the society affected to deal with the situation using their own resources. Earthquake: Movement of the earth’s crust which generates intense deformation of the rocks in the earth’s interior, accumulating energy which is suddenly released in the form of waves which shake the surface of the earth. Emergencies: Adverse event which causes alteration in people, material things and the environment as a result of a natural or man‐made occurrence, in which the community has response capacity. Household First Aid Kit: is a box of resistant material acquired by a family to store first aid materials and medicines. Hazard (H) : Physical event, potential prejudicial, phenomenon and/or human activity which can cause death or injury, material damage, the interruption of social and economic activity or environmental degradation. Incident Command System (ICS): ICS is an on scene, all risk, flexible modular system adaptable to any scale of natural as well as manmade emergency/incidents. ICS seeks to strengthen the existing disaster response management system by ensuring that the designated controlling/responsible authorities at different levels are backed by trained Incidence Command Teams (ICTs). Mitigation: Measures taken in anticipation of a disaster with the aim to reduce or eliminate its impact on society and the environment. It includes engineering and other measures of physical protection, as well as legislative measures to control the use of land and urban settlements.
4 Preparation: Actions which are carried out before emergencies or disasters occur, with the aim of strengthening community response capacity. Prevention: Activities designed to provide permanent protection and avoid damage to people, possessions and the environment. Risk Reduction: Conceptual framework made up of elements which work to minimize vulnerabilities and risks in a society, to avoid (prevention) or limit (mitigation and preparation) the adverse impact of hazards within the wider context of sustainable development. Response: Action to alleviate suffering or save human lives. Risk: Probability of harmful consequences or expected losses (deaths, injuries, property, livelihoods, interruption of economic activity or environmental deterioration) as a result of interactions between natural or anthropological disasters and conditions of vulnerability. Disaster Risk = Hazard + Vulnerability ‐ Capacity Temporary shelter: Is the place where shelter is provided on a temporary basis, together with food, clothing and health care for vulnerable people before and during the occurrence of a destructive phenomenon or following the occurrence of such an event. Vulnerability (V) : The conditions determined by physical, social, economic and environmental factors which increases the damageability or proneness of an individual or community/society to impact of hazards.
5 Table of Content Chapter Content Page no. Forward 2 Terminologies 3‐41. Introduction 6‐72. Objectives and Approaches of School Safety Programme 8‐93. Hazard Identification and Risk Analysis 10‐124. Risk Reduction @ Our School: Prevention, Mitigation & Preparedness 13‐155. Response and Recovery 166. Conclusion 17 References 18
6 Chapter I Introduction Among all public amenities, schools and the children inside them are among the most vulnerable groups during any disaster. Thousands of children lose their lives every year in deadly disasters, mostly while attending classes. No task is more important as creating a safe learning environment for our children. Yet, children need not be mere recipients of emergency aid or risk reduction support. They can be leaders and agents of change for a culture of disaster safety. No task is as important as creating safe learning environment for our nations children. Incident of children deaths due to building collapse, fire accidents and stampede bring to light the need to be continually vigilant to ensure for safety of students and staff in schools. The event that unfolded in the Kumbakonam fire tragedy which took the lives of 93 children reiterate the need to have school building level emergency preparedness and response plans, schedule time in the busy school day to practice drills to respond efficiently and effectively to hazardous occurences that might be encountered with an updated plan and execution. Amongst all the public facilities, children in schools are the most vulnerable groups during any disaster. A large number of municipal and privately managed schools operate in various urban centres, many of which are built in congested areas and are exposed to various hazards. Further adding to the vulnerability is the improper siting of these buildings, inadequacies in structure and non‐structural mitigation measures and preparedness plans to meet any unforeseen incident. Safe while Studying? Roughly one billion children aged 0‐14 live in countries with high seismic zones. Several hundred are at risk when they are attending schools. 971 students and 31 teachers died in 2001 Bhuj Earthquake. 1884 schools building collapsed, loss of 5950 classrooms, 11761 school buildings suffered major to minor damage. 300 children marching in the Republic Day Procession in the narrow lanes were killed when buildings collapsed into narrow street from both sides. There were reports of children running towards the school building from open ground to safeguard them. 23 December1995, nearly 425 people many of them school children perished as they tried to escape the flames during a school prize giving ceremony in the town of Dabwali, Haryana. Kumbakonam Fire tragedy..... A deadly fire raged through Lord Krishna School killed 93 children, all below the age of 11 years.
7 It is also a fact that many of the schools do not address issue of safety due to unawareness, lack of information, etc. This document has been developed to highlight the ideas and activities that will work to create safer schools for our children. The main strategy is to place school safety on the education agenda. In a typical school environment, there are several areas where safety concerns exist. It may be possible to identify and list them, but specific actions require the attention of school administration, teachers and staffs. The challenge for schools is to build these safety aspects to the lives of children so that these become inherent part of their culture towards safety. Developing school safety plan for our school is a beginning to a culture towards safe education environment which require involvement of School Authorities, teachers, staff members and children at large. Safety plan so developed by cooperated efforts needs to be upgraded, updated and practiced as mock drills on regular basis for ensuring its effectiveness during any incident. Major points of Hon’ble Supreme Court Judgment on School Safety Hon’ble Supreme Court of India in its landmark judgment dated April13, 2009 on Writ Petition(Civil) no. 483 of 2004, has given direction on several aspects of school safety. Hon’ble Apex Court directed that “Right to education incorporates the provision of safer schools”. Detailed directions for compliance has been given on the following: ‐ a) Fire Safety Measures in Schools (Point 3.1 page 23 of the Order) b) Training of School Teachers and other Staffs (Point 3.2 page 25 of the Order) c) School Building Specifications (Point 3.3 page 27 of the Order) d) Clearances & Certificates (Point 3.4 page 29 of the Order) Further in view of what happened in Lord Krishna Middle School in District Kumbakonam where 93 children were burnt alive in fire incident in school premises and many similar incidences in past, Hon’ble court has given following specific directions for schools: ‐ a) All existing government and private schools shall install fire extinguishing equipments within a period of six months. b) The school buildings be kept free from inflammable and toxic material. If storage is inevitable, they should be stored safely. c) Evaluation of structural aspect of the school may be carried out periodically. We direct that the concerned engineers and officials must strictly follow the National Building Code. The safety certificate be issued only after proper inspection. Dereliction in duty must attract immediate disciplinary action against the concerned officials. d) Necessary training be imparted to the staff and other officials of the school to use the fire extinguishing equipments. Judgment copy can be downloaded from http://judis.nic.in/supremecourt/chejudis.asp
8 Chapter II Objectives and Approaches for School Safety Programme In line with the directions of Hon’ble Supreme Court, the District Administration, Dhanbad has planned to cover all schools in the district under School Safety Programme. The objective and approach of this programme will be as following: ‐ Objectives of School Safety Programme Promote disaster safety in schools through education, awareness planning & demonstration/mock drills. Assist schools in preparing for future disasters. Prepare teaching material on school safety. Build capacity of teaching instructors, school staff on school safety. Approach to School Safety Programme Approach to Disaster education focusing on the school community to follow Dr. Daisaku Ikeda’s proposal, The Challenge of Global Empowerment: Education for a Sustainable Future, on environmental education. The approach is to help school students, teachers and management “To Learn, To Reflect and To Empower”: To Learn: Students deepen their awareness about hazards and risks when they understand realities and know facts. Recent natural disasters to be well documented and shared. These serve as case studies for teachers as well as students. Wherever needed, disasters are simulated with the help of portable models. The learning process is strengthened by curriculum change. To Reflect: Students analyze factors leading to human casualties and injuries in disasters, so that they can recognize development practices and human actions that can cause disasters or prevent them. Students connect to their own local communities and families and share their learning with them. To Empower: Students take concrete action toward reducing risks in their environment. Classroom and school exercises are introduced to help them take small definitive actions that can become a precursor to bigger investments for disaster risk reduction. School management prepares school disaster management plans which identify roles and responsibilities and which are rehearsed periodically.
9 Steps for School Safety Programme Step 1. Identification of schools and inviting them to participate. Step 2. Orientation of school management, teachers and students; and Rapid Visual Survey of the School premises and building to assess vulnerability. Step3. School Safety Planning with school management, teachers and students representatives. Step 4. Awareness and Training of all students about – a. Disasters; b. Drop, Cover & Hold Exercise c. Fire Safety, Search & Rescue and First Aid Training Step 5. Mock Earthquake and Fire Safety drills Non‐structural safety measures. Step 6. Promotion of Culture of Safety in Schools. Interactions within schools on disaster management. Initiate safety practices through school newsletter, debates, quizzes, etc.
10 Chapter III Hazard Identification and Risk Analysis A potential hazard which may affect the school needs to be identified so that prevention and mitigation measures are taken before hand to avert, any possible disaster in school. Possible hazards and the risk associated with such hazards have been enlisted as under after brainstorming:‐ Sl. No. Hazard Whether Vulnerable or not (Y/N)* Risk of Occurrence on scale of 1 to 10** Situation Analysis (to be done by School Authority after rapid Visual Survey) Natural Hazards 1. Earthquake 2. Fire 3. Lightening and Thunderstorm 4. Flood 5. Air Pollution 6. Epidemic 7. Heat Stress Manmade Hazards 8. Land subsidence due to underground coal seams’ fire 9. Industrial Waste
11 Sl. No. Hazard Whether Vulnerable or not (Y/N)* Risk of Occurrence on scale of 1 to 10** Situation Analysis (to be done by School Authority after rapid Visual Survey) Hazard 10. Chemical Hazard 11. Gas leakage 12. Bomb Blast/Riots 13. Internal Violence/Shootout 14. Hostage Kidnapping 15. Stampede 16. Road Accidents near school 17. Mishap during boarding school bus and/or on road 18. Electrical Shocks 19. Drug Abuse *Factors to which Vulnerability is extremely low to be indicated as “NO”. ** Possibility of detecting risk of occurrence to be ranked as mentioned below: ‐ Possibility of Occurrence Rank Absolute Certain 1
12 Very High 2 High 3 Slightly High 4 Moderate 5 Low 6 Very Low 7 Remote 8 Very Remote 9 Absolute Uncertain 10 How to Proceed for School Safety Programme
13 Chapter IV Risk Reduction @ Our School: Prevention, Mitigation & Preparedness Experience teaches us “Prevention is better than Cure”. This golden rule has stood the tests of time and should be guiding principle for all safety plans. The preceding chapter identifies several hazards and risks associated with those. It is very important to act before hand and control the hazard taking form of any disaster. To begin with, one Disaster Management Committee (DMC) at school level is to be constituted. The Committee shall have the following roles and responsibilities:‐ The Committee shall act as the core committee and would be headed by the Principal of the school with Senior Teachers, In‐charge of primary and nursery sections, school captains/monitors, members of Parent Teacher Association, representatives from Fire Safety Department, etc as the members. The Committee should be the guiding committee and all safety teams shall be reporting to the committee. The Committee would establish coordination between several teams working under it and establish contact with external resources like District Administration, Fire Brigade, Hospitals, etc. The committee will be responsible for undertaking preventive steps for the safety of personnel and materials. The Committee would frame out an annual plan for enhanced preparedness through awareness generation programme, trainings, mock drills etc at school level and would delegate responsibilities under it to various teams under it. For undertaking structural mitigation measures, the committee would constitute a structural safety team comprising of teachers, students and atleast one Civil Engineer and direct the team to submit its report on structural mitigation measures to be undertaken to ensure enhance safety and act on it. The teams to be constituted under Disaster Management Committee will be as following: ‐ A. Safety Inspections Teams (SITs): SITs have to be constituted floor wise/wing wise. Each SIT would be constituted by the Class Teachers and Students. The SIT will undertake weekly safety inspections on their respective floors using a checklist indicated below and would submit their reports weekly to the Principal cum President of Disaster Management Committee. B. Awareness building, Warning and Information Dissemination Team: This team would make the students and the teachers aware of the threats, underlying various hazards and safety tips and information for safeguarding oneself and others from those threats. The team would disseminate information like school evacuation plan,
14 list of important phone numbers, maintain database of students, would organize several events and competition to upgrade the information on safety aspects, periodically. Team would act as intelligence team in identifying hazards and reporting to the Principal, warning students and teachers. The team is supposed to build rapport with the students and teachers so that they get to know all information related to safety on time. C. Fire Safety Team (FST): This team would be responsible for ensuring enhanced preparedness and mitigation levels towards fire safety. The team would coordinate in organizing trainings related to fire safety, ensure fire extinguishers are in place and in working condition, students and staff members know their use, fire alarm is in place, evacuation mock drills practiced periodically. D. First Aid Team: The team will coordinate in organizing trainings related to first aid in association with Red Cross, Hospitals etc. The aim should be to train all the teachers and staff members over a period of time on First Aid. Also, the team would ensure the presence of first aid kit at several important locations in the school building and to keep the First Aid Kit in workable condition. E. Safe Evacuation Team: The Evacuation team will disseminate school evacuation plan, organize evacuation mock drills periodically. It will keep track of non structural mitigation measures like whether the corridors are clear of obstructions, exits are marked, emergency door marked, Safety Spot identified and disseminated to all etc. F. Bus Safety Team: The team would ensure safe boarding of all the students on the school bus and would take feedback from the boarders and about violation of rules, if any, by the bus driver and the conductor. G. Search and Rescue Team: The team would coordinate in organizing trainings related to search and rescue in association with the fire brigade. Also, the team would be
15 responsible for maintaining inventory of tool kit and emergency supplies. The team will organize drills related to search and rescue. Indicative Checklist for Safety Inspections in School 1. Are the electrical fitments in the classrooms and corridor working properly? 2. Switch Board/main switches working properly, are the switch board covered and cautioned? 3. Whether checked Water Coolers and other electrical gadgets transferring shock? If yes than remedial measures taken or not? 4. Any case of electric shock or problem of any type encountered by the staff/student? 5. Any Sparks or Short circuit occurred in past one week? 6. Are the corridors and staircases clear of obstruction? 7. Classroom door and emergency doors clear of obstruction? 8. Floor evacuation plan displayed properly or not? 9. Fire extinguishers are in place or not? 10. Any high voltage wire there around? 11. Water quality from the filter is proper? 12. Has toilet cleanliness maintained? 13. Whether ceiling tiles or plaster hanging from the wall/roof? 14. Is there any dampness in wall? 15. Cross ventilation in classrooms and library maintained or not? 16. Are rooms properly illuminated with lighting? 17. Are students/staff with contiguous disease/infection, attending the school? If yes, the details to be provided. 18. Any Problem in chemical labs? Whether chemicals placed properly, ventilated and exhaust working? 19. Is lightening conductor in place and working properly? (Specially prior to and during Rainy Season) 20. Is First Aid kit in place? 21. Any suggestions from students/staff for upgrading floor safety? 22. Any stranger seen with suspicious behavior in school?
16 Chapter V Response and Recovery The preparedness measures discussed in the preceding chapter is to ensure that during emergency situation the inmates of the school building take right action and do not panic. Following should be the response mechanism in a school at crisis situation: Chain of Command (School Incident Command System) The School Incident Command System will not put in place any new hierarchy or alter the existing system, but will only reinforce it. During any emergency, the Principal of the school shall be the Incident Commander and safety teams will act as Incident Command Teams under the command of the members of Disaster Management Committee, to carry out order of the Incident Commander. Evacuation Plan and Procedure In crisis situations when evacuation is required, the teacher in the class or monitor shall be responsible to instruct the students to calmly but actively get out of the school in queue and evacuate the building as per evacuation plan of school. They should be taken to Safety Spots Identified beforehand in school safety plan. The teachers would be the last to move out of the classroom and once the class is evacuated, the doors are to be bolted from outside. At the safety spot, teacher needs to do head count and report the status to the Incident Commander i.e. the Principal. Communication The Incident Commander is responsible to develop internal and external communication protocol. Also, Emergency alarm system should be installed by school administration at proper location within in school premises and student should be informed about emergency alarm/warning system.
17 Chapter VI Conclusion Children are most precious gift to the humanity which needs to be safeguarded at any cost. Most of the children spend a major part of their childhood in schools while learning and exploring the world. Therefore, it is essential for us to make school safe for our children. For this every one of us, from School Administration to Parents, teachers to students has to play important role. School Safety is a dynamic process in which everyone from the school needs to contribute for their own safety and safety for others. The principal of continuous improvement of everything by everyone (Kaizen), needs to be applied, upgraded plans need to be disseminated and practiced to ensure safety. The mock drills should be an integral part of the plan and needs to be practiced regularly so that the plan is put to test and the shortfall rectified to save lives and property at the time of need. Steps for Preparation of School Safety Plan Hazard Identification and Risk Analysis (Format Pg. 10‐11) & Checklist on Pg. Incidence Response System & Chain of Command Diagram (Ref. Pg‐16) Formation of Disaster Mgt. Committee & Different teams (Ref. Pg‐ 13 & 14) Preparation of sub‐plans by respective teams/ Contact details of each team members (Ref. Pg‐ 13 & 14) Evacuation Route Plan (Ref: Pg.18), School Emergency Contact Numbers SAFE SCHOOL 12345