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An Investigation into the Quality of Emergency Lockdown Procedures in New Zealand Secondary Schools Developed from a 60 Credit research report presented.

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Presentation on theme: "An Investigation into the Quality of Emergency Lockdown Procedures in New Zealand Secondary Schools Developed from a 60 Credit research report presented."— Presentation transcript:

1 An Investigation into the Quality of Emergency Lockdown Procedures in New Zealand Secondary Schools Developed from a 60 Credit research report presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Masters of Management in Occupational Safety and Health at Massey University A. H. Evans 2011 A summary of the questionnaire results

2 Is a lockdown response necessary? HSE Act (1992) Section 6: Every employer shall take all practicable steps to ensure the safety of employees while at work and in particular shall take all practicable steps to…e) develop procedures for dealing with emergencies that may arise while employees are at work. Section 15: Every employer shall take all practicable steps to ensure that no action or inaction of any employee while at work harms any other person. NAG 5 Each board of trustees is also required to: (a)Provide a safe physical and emotional environment for students (b)Comply fully with any legislation currently in force or that may be developed to ensure the safety of students or employees

3 Emergencies that may arise? Include but are not limited to: FireGas leak Aggressive intruder MedicalEarthquakeTsunami Volcanic eruptionBomb Threat Dangerous animal Flood Suicide Armed intruder Aggressive student Community Emergency Pandemic

4 There are two realistic responses to an emergency Emergency evacuation – Move people from an area of higher risk to area of lower risk Emergency lockdown – prevent people from moving from an area of lower risk to an area of higher risk. Having both of these responses available makes managing emergency situations much more effective.

5 Methodology Extensive literature review used to develop 5 elements of best practice: Communication Actions within classroom Actions in non classroom areas Staff training Drills Elements of best practice used to develop online questionnaire

6 Who was involved? 266 New Zealand secondary schools invited to participate. 69 responded completely giving a response rate of 25.9%. The results are detailed in the following slides.

7 Question1: Your position in the organisation? It is clear that most of the respondents were senior managers of the school, most commonly Principals or Deputy Principals

8 Question 2: Does the school have a specific written emergency lockdown response? The majority of responses indicate that school do have written emergency lockdown response procedures.

9 Question 3: Was the response developed internally or externally? The overwhelming majority of procedures were developed internally by school staff.

10 Question 4: What is the primary method of notifying the school to lockdown? The most common method of initiating an emergency lockdown response is through the sounding of a special alarm or signal.

11 Question 5: What is the primary recommended method of communication between the following during a lockdown?

12 Question 6: From how many locations can a lockdown be activated. The overwhelming majority of schools indicated that an emergency lockdown response could be activated from one location.

13 Question 7: How many staff have written authority to activate a lockdown? 61% of schools have fewer than four staff with authority to implement such a response.

14 Question 8: Where are copies of the lockdown response located? It is recommended that copies of the procedure are available in five specific locations: Staff handbook, new staff induction, visitor induction, classrooms and common areas.

15 Question 9: How many of the 11 recommended in-classroom actions are included in lockdown procedures 37% of schools have in excess of eight of the recommended eleven actions included in their emergency lockdown response procedure. None of the schools had all eleven

16 Question 10 : Are there specific instructions detailing the appropriate response during: Physical Education lessons appear to be most comprehensively covered with specific actions for those classes being included in 79% of procedures. Either end of the school day are the out of class times that have the least specific actions available.

17 Question 11: Are there specific instructions on how students who are out of class should respond to a lockdown signal? Approximately two thirds of respondents indicated that instructions for what actions should be taken with regards to students who are out of class when an emergency lockdown response is initiated.

18 Question 12: Has there been an occasion at your school when a lockdown was initiated? One quarter of respondents indicated that they have had an occasion to implement an emergency lockdown response.

19 Question 13: Has a lockdown drill been conducted at your school. 56% of respondents indicated that their school had conducted and emergency lockdown response drill.

20 Question 14: How often are lockdown drills conducted? 56% of respondents indicated that their schools held drills at least annually, while 35% reported never having held an emergency lockdown response drill.

21 Question 15: Is there a formal process for reviewing drills? 55% of respondents stated that their school did not have a formal process that was to be followed when reviewing performance of the drill.

22 Question 16: Is the formal review process followed? 60% of respondents that stated that there was a review process also believed that it was always followed.

23 Question 17 :Have you (respondent) received any training in the development of emergency procedures? 61% of the respondents claimed that they had not received any training in how to develop emergency response procedures.

24 Question 18 : Have staff received training in: Shows that some staff in each establishment have received training in each of the five identified areas.

25 Conclusions It appears from this research that while the majority of schools posses an emergency response lockdown procedure, most do not reflect elements of best practice developed in the aftermath of mass casualty events that have occurred overseas. The amount of guidance provided by the Ministry of Education that is available to schools in developing these systems is minimal, and the Education Review Office appear reluctant to closely monitor these procedures as part of the review process. The occurrence of high profile school shootings in the USA has lead to changes within legislation that require schools to have comprehensive emergency response plans which are to include lockdown procedure. Making schools legally obliged to have such procedures has ensured that state education boards have invested in developing guidelines to assist schools in developing these responses. New Zealand has yet to experience a mass casualty school shooting event and there are presently no specific legislative requirements placed upon New Zealand schools to introduce lockdown procedures. These factors appear to have resulted in the development of effective emergency procedures to be a low priority within the Ministry of Education and school management teams within New Zealand.

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