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Disaster/Tornado Drill Policy

Safety & Security
Inclement Weather
Heat/Ozone
Guidelines
School
Closure Plan
Disaster/Tornado
Drill Policy
Canine (K9) Unit

District policy CKC (local) states that principals shall conduct emergency drills to assure the orderly movement of students and personnel during severe weather. The accepted and recommended signal for these drills is a series of uninterrupted or continuous short bells. One long bell signal call is clear and students should be returned to class.

1. The principal should select an area of the building to be used for shelter by each class or section of the building. In selecting the sheltered area the principal should look for interior hallways that do not run parallel to the southwesterly direction and are located on the ground floor of the building.

  • If possible gymnasiums, auditoriums or other rooms with wide free-span roofs should not be used. Also, areas adjacent to a great deal of glass should not be used. It is very important that all staff members and all students know where the designated shelter area is located.
  • The principal should contact the building’s architect in selecting the safest areas of the building. The district’s director of new construction will assist you in contacting the architect.

2. The principal should designate an outside area, well away from the building and power lines, for assembly should it become necessary to evacuate the building.

3. During periods of severe weather, particularly when a tornado watch is in effect (a tornado watch occurs when weather conditions exist which make a tornado possible) specific staff members should be assigned to monitor the building’s cable television and the city’s early warning sirens/speakers.

  • Your local fire department or other public safety operations will broadcast official information over the telecable, sirens and speakers. Commercial radio and television may not be reliable for you.
  • Be sure to check with your cable operator (Allen, Dallas, Richardson, Murphy and Plano have different ones) to determine which channel to monitor.
  • Staff members should also be assigned to watch the sky for large masses of dark rolling clouds. When information is received of a tornado warning (which means a tornado has been spotted) or when a staff member spots a tornado, the principal should send occupants of the building to the designated safe areas.
  • When sent to the designated areas, teachers should (if possible) carry their roll book, and if time permits, identify each student present in the area.
  • Once in the sheltered area all persons should assume a protective position by kneeling on their knees and elbows with their foreheads on the floor and covering their heads with their hands. Persons in wheelchairs or other persons who are unable to assume this position should assume whatever position that affords them the most protection. It is recommended that those in wheelchairs not be removed from their wheelchairs, as this will limit their mobility.
  • If a tornado or other storm should hit the building, persons should remain in the sheltered area until it passes. The area should then be carefully inspected for downed electrical lines and other hazards. Before leaving, the area should be checked for injured persons. If possible, one staff member should remain with the injured while others direct the remainder to predesignated assembly areas. Once in that area, the principal should assign one staff member to insure that emergency help is summoned.
  • Next, the principal should have a list compiled of the students who are present, those known to be injured and left in the building and those who cannot be located.
  • If a tornado appears so quickly that the above action cannot be followed, all occupants should seek cover at once. For those inside the building, heavy furniture provides good protection. Interior closets also provide shelter. Once in the sheltered area, persons should assume the protective position.

4. Anyone caught outside should not attempt to run to the building unless he or she is absolutely sure to arrive before the tornado strikes. Instead, the person should take shelter by assuming the protective position on the ground. If a ditch, creek or other depression is close, the person should take shelter in it.

5. If a school bus is caught in the open when a tornado is approaching, the occupants should be escorted to a nearby ditch or other depression where they should lie face down with their hands covering their head.

6. These procedures should be practiced at the building level at least one time each semester.

  • It is recommended that these drills not be practiced by transportation unless permission is received from the Director of Safety and Security Services and or the Associate Superintendent for District Services.
  • Students are not to be exposed to danger or inclement weather for the purpose of practicing these procedures.