The Department of Homeland Security and FEMA had interjected themselves, and appropriately so, into the area of school safety. This article explores the premise behind the cooperation between DHS, FEMA and your child’s public school. Most of the policies and procedures make a great deal of sense and should be followed as a matter of course. However there are some very concerning elements which have surfaced with regard to school safety procedures, your rights as a parent and the safety of your child.
The Prime Directive of School Safety
The first mandate for teachers and administrators in the public school setting is to keep students safe. This prime directive supersedes any other mission requirements related to the functioning of a public school. Teachers and administrators as well as support personnel have a moral, professional and legal obligation to tend to children who are in physical and/or emotional distress. The Department of Homeland Security and FEMA have prepared disaster related documents detailing the professional responsibilities for school personnel in disaster related scenarios.
In the furtherance of this mission, public schools are required to participate in various safety exercise drills such as lockdowns and bus evacuation drills. Both functions serve a legitimate purpose and parents should feel a measure of comfort that schools have taken steps under the direction of the government in order to help keep our children safe. However, some plans no matter how well-intentioned have pitfalls and some of the details of these plans should be concerning to parents of school-aged children.
The following paragraphs detail a previous disaster drill, held in Denver, in which the procedures should raise the hair on the back of the neck of all parents. READ MORE…