This week’s special guest will be Fire Chief Harold Scoggins! He will be joining our Monday Morning Assembly.
The first drill we engaged in during safety month was a fire drill. All students were evacuated in under one minute, and it took us just a short time longer to gather at our safety location. Students and staff knew exactly what to do, and did a great job moving quickly and safely. Before the end of this week, we will engage in a Shelter in Place drill, and next week we’ll practice a lockdown. For at least one of these drills, we will practice a reverse evacuation – returning to the building at a time when most students are outside, such as recess time. A lockdown drill is used when there is an unsafe person on campus. Staff and students will practice this drill together, and we’ll talk to students about the drill in age-appropriate ways.
Here’s an example of this language for younger students:
We practice fire drills so that we know what to do in case there is a fire. We are now going to practice being safe when there is trouble around. Practice helps to make doing the most useful, safest thing automatic. It creates a program in your mind that then runs itself in a time when thinking could be frozen by fear. The bad thing may never happen, but when we are practiced in protecting ourselves, we can feel calmer knowing that we know what to do.
We wear helmets when we ride our bikes. We don’t expect to fall, but if we do, we will be protected.
During a shelter drill, such as a lockdown or shelter-in-place, remember the acronym, PAL:
P is for PAUSE: First, pause and take a deep breath. Breathing helps your mind work.
A is for ADULT: Wherever you are on campus, find a trusted adult. If you are in the classroom, stay there and find your teacher or other adult in the room. If you are outside, look for the teacher or trusted adult closest to you and listen carefully to their directions.
L is for LISTEN: Listen to instructions. During this time, the teachers will lock the doors to their classrooms. You may need to find a safe place in another space besides your classroom. Listen to the directions of the trusted adult, and wait until they let you know that everything is all clear.