How We Prepare for Emergencies
Our schools have emergency supplies, including a supply of food and water, as well as first aid supplies, rescue equipment, and other basic necessities. These supplies are inspected regularly and used during drills. Most schools also have additional emergency supplies located in each classroom.
Our schools conduct a number of regular emergency drills. Every school conducts a number of fire drills. In addition, schools conduct at least one tornado and one law enforcement (lockdown) drill to practice procedures.
A key ingredient in the safe school recipe is the classroom response to an incident at school. Weather events, fire, intruders and other threats to student safety are scenarios that are planned and trained for by students and staff. BPS101’s safety program includes a Standard Response Protocol (SRP). The SRP is based on four actions: Lockout, Lockdown, Evacuate, and Shelter. Please take a moment to review these actions >
► What’s the difference between a lockout and a lockdown?
At BPS101, we use the terms “lockout” and “lockdown.” While they may sound similar, the procedures for each are very different.
Lockout: A lockout (formerly known as “soft lockdown”) secures the perimeter (doors and windows) of a building to minimize exposure to a safety threat outside, such as criminal activity in the area. During a lockout, no person (parent, student, staff member, guest, etc.) may enter or leave the building and classes will proceed as usual (to the extent possible). A lockout ends when the police department confirms that the threat has passed. In a lockout situation, the school(s) involved will post the sign at right in the front door window to alert visitors of the situation.
Lockdown: A lockdown is a physical response to an imminent safety threat inside the building, such as an intruder or attacker. A lockdown response is situational and may include running away, hiding in a secure space, or even fighting the attacker. In a lockdown, staff members and students will evaluate their options to determine safest course of action.
In either a lockdown and lockout, schools will act with the safety of students and staff in mind, and school officials will always in coordination with police and fire departments. So that we can keep our focus and effectively manage our emergency resources, we kindly ask that you do not attempt to contact us during a lockout our lockdown. We will always communicate with parents as soon as it is practicable—our first priority is keeping students safe.
We have safe buildings, and each school also undergoes annual safety inspections by the Kane County Regional Office of Education and the Batavia Fire Department. During the school day, there is only one entrance through which visitors can access the school.
We have trained personnel at each school, including a nurse. In addition, our staff take courses in disaster preparation, response, and emergency management. If there is an emergency at school, school personnel have been trained and will react quickly to protect children.
Keep yourself informed of school procedures by attending parent meetings, reading the student handbook, school newsletters, and checking the school website periodically. Ask your child about their school’s emergency drills, and make sure that your family is prepared for emergencies, too. In addition, be aware of the district-wide Safety Help Line and when to use it.
Communicating With the School During an Emergency
Schools communicate regularly with parents using Messenger, our electronic messaging system. Parents will receive automated phone calls, text messages, and emails during school emergencies. If you are not receiving messages from Messenger, check with your child’s school to ensure that the school has the correct number for you. It is imperative that we have correct contact information for you during an emergency. Make sure you update your school emergency card and contact information for each child each time the information changes.
Please do not attempt to call the school during an emergency, we will contact you with the information you need to know. Although there are people assigned to answer phones at school, these lines are likely to be overloaded during an emergency, and are not your best source of information. Keep your phone with you during emergencies so that you can receive updates.
Depending on the emergency, you may not be able to get close to the school and may be asked to wait in a safe area. If it is hazardous for students to be released, everyone will be kept inside the school until notified by the authorities that it is safe outside. Schools will act with the safety of students in mind, and school officials will always follow the directives of the police department and the fire department.
Family Reunification Following an Emergency
When it is safe to pick up your child following an emergency, you will need to follow a special process to ensure everyone’s safety. You must bring I.D. and you must be listed on the child’s emergency card in order to check a child out. When your identity is verified, your child will be brought to you.