Presentation on theme: "Planning how to respond when an emergency or disaster occurs"— Presentation transcript:
1 Planning how to respond when an emergency or disaster occurs PreparednessPlanning how to respond when an emergency or disaster occursPreparedness involves planning how to respond when an emergency or disasteroccurs and working to marshal the resources needed to respond effectively.Just as schools and education agencies cannot prevent natural disasters, theymay not be able to prevent a terrorist event. But, they can plan how torespond when an emergency does take place, either in school or the community.Federal and state education agencies urge every school to have an emergencymanagement plan, but do not require school plans to be integrated withstatewide planning efforts. Most preparedness efforts originating from theeducation arena are targeted at, or take place at the local level. Most publichealth preparedness efforts do not fully engage local education agencies andschools.
2 What is Currently Being Done? US Department of Education website for emergency preparedness planFederal funds to help school districts improve and strengthen emergency response FY $30 million“Practical Information on Crisis Planning: a Guide for Schools and Communities” May 2003CDC funds education and health agenciesFEMA: The Multi-Hazard Emergency Planning for Schools Independent Study CourseFEMA for Kids,In March 2003, ED revealed a new website, plan,to provide school leaders with more information about emergency preparedness.In addition to the website, ED is making $38 million available in FY 2003 tohelp school districts improve and strengthen emergency response and crisismanagement plans. Funds can be used to train school personnel, parents andstudents in crisis response; coordinate with local emergency respondersincluding fire and police; purchase equipment; and coordinate with groupsand organizations responsible for recovery issues, such as health and mental-health agencies. An additional $30 million is included in the proposed FY 2004.ED recently released Practical Information on Crisis Planning: a Guide forSchools and Communities (May 2003). The Guide is intended to guideschools and school districts through crisis planning. In April of 2002, ED andthe Harvard School of Public Health sponsored a teleconference, entitledThe National Clearinghouse for Educational Facilities website,includes an extensive resource list on Disaster Preparedness for Schools.CDC funds education and health agencies in 18 states to strengthen theircapacity to plan and implement Coordinated School Health Programs.
3 What are the Gaps? No coordination between preparedness activities Few activities are designed to foster collaboration between education, public health, and other emergency responders at the state or local levelSchool plans are often treated as a separate plan rather than as part of the community planSchool plans tend not to be practiced as part of larger community preparedness exercises.Clearly, there are many preparedness activities underway. However, thereis no coordination between these activities. Few activities, notably theCDC and ED teleconference and the FEMA multi-hazards training course,are designed to foster collaboration between education, public health,and other emergency responders at the state or local level, or across levels.Although schools are urged to plan, and the recent ED emergency planninggrants will help the process, school plans are often treated as a separateplan rather than as part of the community plan. When collaboration withother community agencies is discussed, it is usually with law enforcement,fire, and homeland security, not with public health and mental healthpreparedness efforts. School plans tend not to be practiced as part oflarger community preparedness exercises.
4 Oklahoma City -- Lessons Learned Contingency planning contributes to an effective responseLessons learned also apply to natural disasters, industrial accidents and other catastrophesIf disaster planning is part of the rhythm of a community, lives will be saved.A clear theme is identified from this tragedy—planning.Nothing emerges more clearly from all of the lessons learned inOklahoma City than the degree to which contingency planningcontributes to an effective response. From clergy to firefighters,from the schools to the Chamber of Commerce, everyone agreedon the need for careful planning.Chances are that most communities will never be struck by adevastating terrorist attack, but many of these lessons learnedalso apply to natural disasters, industrial accidents and the othercatastrophes that can befall a community in the modern world. Ifdisaster planning is part of the rhythm of a community, lives willbe saved.
5 Planning for the Unthinkable… Have a PlanTest Your PlanShare Your PlanRepeat Exercises... and Then Do It AgainIf You Can’t Afford Repeated Exercises, At Least Review Your PlansForge RelationshipsPrepare Lists of Vendors and Service ProvidersHave a Plan. Every community, every organization benefits from disaster planning.Diligent planning saves lives.Test Your Plan. Try your plan out before it is needed. Find the weaknesses in yourplan when lives are not at stake.Share Your PlanCommunicate the lessons of planning and exercises to the rest of your organization.Too often, participants in planning exercises do not share what they have learned.Repeat Exercises... and Then Do It AgainEven organizations with low turnover may not recognize how many people comeand go in the space of a few years. Repeated exercises train new personnel and reinforceprevious training for existing personnel.If You Can’t Afford Repeated Exercises, At Least Review Your PlansRepeated exercises may be beyond the budget of your organization. However,everyone can afford to take the plan off the shelf and review it a couple of times a year.Forge Relationships as Part of the Planning ProcessRelationships between organizations emerge during planning and exercises. Be sureyou maintain them between exercises.Prepare Lists of Vendors and Service Providers. Know local resources for equipment,materials and specialized labor that you might need in response to a terrorist disaster.
6 CommunicationsCommunication technology—the physical ability to send and receive a messageDisasters Overwhelm Telephone NetworksProvide Alternate Communication MethodsUse the InternetConsider Interoperability of Radio EquipmentUse Mass Media as an Alternate MeansSocial communication—the content of the messageAvoid JargonKeep Your Workers InformedCommunicate Among AgenciesHave Up-to-date Contact InformationThere are two parts to communications: Communication technology—the physicalability to send and receive a message; and Social communication—the content ofthe message.Disasters Overwhelm Telephone Networks In Oklahoma City, physical damageto the telephone system was minimal. Even so, the demand for service overwhelmed thenetwork. Work with telephone service providers to ensure emergency override capacityfor first responders. Confirm that they can provide access to temporary additional capacity.Provide Alternate Communication Methods If standard telephone services are inoperable,you must have an alternate method of communication. Allow for this in your plan.Use the Internet Internet usage was not a factor during the Oklahoma City bombing, buttimes have changed. When planning, remember that media around the world and about halfthe homes in the United States have access to the Internet.Consider Interoperability of Radio Equipment When Oklahoma City municipal authoritieswere joined by state and county officials and later by federal and out-of-state agencies, theincompatibility of their communications equipment led to some inefficiencies.Use Mass Media as an Alternate Means of Communication When out-of-area ambulanceswere responding to the bomb site, none of them knew which frequencies to use. Since theambulances’ home bases probably had televisions on, the media could have been used tobroadcast the frequency information.
7 Media Use them to inform and educate You cannot over-plan for dealing with the MediaPlan for a credentialing systemWho says what?Set a scheduleUse Media to your advantageUse the Media to make public announcementsMEDIAYou work with the media to communicate with the public. Usethem to inform and educate.In any situation with large numbers of dead or wounded, worriedfriends, family members and co-workers will want information.It is your job to keep them informed. If they do not get theimmediate information they are looking for from the media, theywill come to the scene.6 Oklahoma City - Seven Years Later_ You Cannot Over-plan for Dealing with the MediaPlanning and exercises must take media demands forinformation and access into account or they will fail during areal disaster.The days when the “three networks” would show up were longgone by the time of the Oklahoma City bombing. Don’t expectjust local and national news representatives. In a major disaster,there will be world-wide news coverage. Within 24 hours, youwill be inundated with news reporters and satellite equipmentfrom around the world.Discuss your disaster response plans with local mediarepresentatives, including television, radio, local wire serviceand print._ Plan for a Credentialing SystemConsider setting up a system for issuing one-time credentialsfor journalists. Planning for this must include setting standardsfor separating true journalists from those who just want a closerlook._ Who Says What?Each agency should appoint a spokesperson and agenciesshould jointly decide who will speak about what.At a minimum, media relations and planning must includedesignating spokespersons for all involved agencies. All of theagencies must have agreed in advance who will speak aboutphoto courtesy of City of Oklahoma CityLessons for Other Communities 7what. Who will speak about how many people are injured: theRed Cross? ambulance services? the hospitals? Who will speakabout the number of dead: funeral homes? medical examiners?_ Set a ScheduleSchedule regular media briefings. Your planning sessions withlocal journalists will help you determine how often and at whattime you should hold briefings._ Use Media to Your AdvantageIf the situation demands more supplies or personnel, use themedia to put the word out. Conversely, use the media tocommunicate the “stay put until called” message. Unneededpersonnel and supplies can further hinder traffic and add to theconfusion._ Use the Media to Make Public AnnouncementsAs soon as there is a disaster in a community, everyone turns ontheir televisions and radios. Use local media to communicatewith parents.
8 The Media will get their story… Photos from Thurston High School, Springfield, OregonMay 1998Following the shooting at Thurston High School in which 2 students werekilled and 25 wounded, the media descended on the community from all overthe world. They stopped at nothing to get their photos, using telephoto lensesand “camping” out in front of the school for days.
9 Sample School Personnel Roles School RolePossible Role in Terrorism PlanningSchool Safety Specialist and School Security StaffLink to county emergency management agency.School Nurse(s)Link to local health department (LHDChemistry/Physics TeachersLink to nearest HazMat TeamStudent Services Personnel such as Counselors, Social Workers, PsychologistsRecognize the psychological impact of terrorismSchool Safety Specialist and School Security Staff:Link to county emergency management agency. Become familiar with IncidentCommand System. Learn the location of the nearest HazMat Team.School Nurse(s): Link to local health department (LHD). Possibly participatein active surveillance for infectious disease (active surveillance is based on proactivereports to LHDs about school absences due to illnesses). Schools might belocations for mass prophylactic clinics where asymptomatic but exposed personscould come for immunizations or antibiotic protection.Chemistry/Physics Teachers Link to nearest HazMat Team. Could function as the “FirstResponder Awareness” who can initiate an emergency response by notifying properauthorities during a suspected or known chemical or radiological incidentStudent Services Personnel such as Counselors, Social WorkersRecognize the psychological impact of terrorism even when events are not local
10 The America Prepared Campaign Preparedness in America’s Schools: A Comprehensive Look at Terrorism Preparedness in America’s Twenty Largest School Districts
11 The America Prepared Campaign Non-profit, non-partisan initiativeBegan in 2003Board of Directors and 14 national experts in emergency preparedness, media, marketing, government, and businessFunded by Alfred P. Sloan and John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur FoundationsThe America Prepared Campaign is a non-profit, non-partisan initiative that uses theExpertise and energy of national leaders in emergency preparedness, media, marketing,government, and business to give citizens tools and information for preparing theirhomes and families for disaster, with a focus on terrorism preparedness. The Campaignis funded by The Alfred P. Sloan and the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundations.Board of DirectorsSteven Brill, Chairman, The America Prepared Campaign, Inc.Floyd Abrams, Partner, Cahill Gordon & Reindel, LLPCynthia Brill, General Counsel, The America Prepared Campaign, Inc.Barbara Chaffee, President, Public IntelligenceBill Gray, President, Ogilvy & Mather New YorkMaj. Gen. Bruce Lawlor, U.S. Army (Ret.), former Chief of Staff, Dept of Homeland SecurityFrank Luntz, President, Luntz Research CompaniesCarl Weisbrod, President, Alliance for Downtown New York, Inc.
12 The StandardUS Department of Education Practical Information on Crisis Planning: A Guide For Schools and CommunitiesAmerica Prepared rated the largest 20 school districts in US in relation to their PreparednessPlanningDrillingCommunicatingBest/Good/Needs Improvement/FailingThe standards by which they should be evaluated are clear. In May 2003, theDepartment of Education released Practical Information on Crisis Planning: A Guide ForSchools and Communities.* It recommends the steps that all school districts should take toensure that they are prepared for natural disasters and terrorism, among other crises.Thus, America Prepared decided to see how the largest 20 school districts across thecontiguous United States have done in responding to these clear recommendations. Wefound a wide range of performance. But generally we found that these large school systemsneed to do more, often much more.
13 PreparednessPlanning: comprehensive response to a terrorist attack or major natural disasterDrills: conduct monthly drills of that planCommunication: communicate to parents the pertinent details of the plan; parents should know procedure for reuniting with childrenThe Plan. Each school and district should have a comprehensive plan that outlineshow the district and school would respond to a terrorist attack or major naturaldisaster. Each school should have the necessary supplies, as defined by theDepartment of Homeland Security.§Drills. Each school and district should conduct monthly drills of that plan.Districts should monitor that these drills happen.Communication. Each school should communicate to parents the pertinent detailsOf that plan and ask for their input. Parents should also know the procedure forreuniting with their children if they are evacuated from school.
14 The Results“BEST” (3): has comprehensive and sensible emergency plan that deals directly with terrorist threats; has necessary supplies on hand“GOOD” (7): has made significant progress toward the goal of preparedness while still needing some significant improvements“NEEDS IMPROVEMENT” (7):needs serious action in one or more areas“FAILING” (2):has performed unsatisfactorily in all three areas: planning, drilling and communication“BEST” (3): a school district had to have a comprehensive andsensible emergency plan that deals directly with terrorist threats, as well as have thenecessary supplies on hand to respond. It had to have a record of regular drills of thatplan and of communicating with parents effectively and regularly.“GOOD” (7): had to have made significant progress towardachieving the goal of preparedness while still needing some significant improvements.For example, the district may have made sensible attempts to get information out butmay not have translated enough of its materials into other languages used by familiesin the area, thereby limiting effective communication.“NEEDS IMPROVEMENT” (7): were those found to require serious action in one ormore area of planning, drilling or communication. For instance, the district may nothave made any attempt to inform parents, or did not supply schools with necessaryemergency items, such as back-up communications devices.“FAILING” (2): the district must have performed unsatisfactorily in all threeareas: planning, drilling and communication.1 not categorized
15 Fairfax County, Virginia Number of Schools: 241Students: 166,601the most prepared districtexhaustive emergency planhave some of the supplies: kits with flashlights and first aid kitsModel for DOEtemplates for schoolscommunication templates for teachers and principalsplan defines key rolesplanned response actions for terrorist emergenciescontinually perform drills (table-tops once a year with police; fire and tornado drills; walkthroughs of shelter-in-place and lockdowns)information on website in seven languages -- specific information about what parents should do in an emergencyFairfax County Public Schools, along with Montgomery County Public Schools, isclearly the most prepared district of the 20 largest school districts in the country. It has anexhaustive emergency plan and each school in the district has a site specific plan.Principals in the district confirmed that they have some of the supplies recommended by theDepartment of Homeland Security, including kits with flashlights and first aid kits. AnAug poll confirmed that 75 percent of parents reported knowing that theirschool had a plan. It is a featured link on the DOE emergency planning website(www.ed.gov/emergency plan). The Fairfax plan is easy-to-read and has sensible templatesfor schools. It provides communication templates to teachers and principals and defines keyroles for emergency response personnel. It provides response actions for terrorist emergenciessuch as bomb threats, chemical and biohazard emergencies, gas or odor concerns, andhostage situations. Fairfax County continually performs drills of its emergency plan.Principals interviewed confirmed regular fire and tornado drills. They do walkthroughsof shelter-in-place and lockdowns with the teachers and crisis teams (dependingon school size), and they cycle through table top exercises with each of the nine schoolregions bi-annually. There are information sessions with the PTA; the superintendent has acommunity advisory council. Preparedness information is available in seven differentlanguages (Arabic, English, Farsi, Korean, Spanish, Urdu, and Vietnamese).
16 Montgomery County, Maryland Number of Schools: 190Number of Students: 139,203model of preparednessexemplary multi-hazard crisis plancomprehensive checklist for schoolscommunicate details of the parent/child reunification process to parentsemergency codes used in Montgomery: Code Red, Code Blue, and Code Blue Shelter-in-Placeguidance on suspected chemical, biological, and radiological incidentstwo code red and two code blue drills a year, in addition to 10 fire drillsMontgomery County Public Schools can be used as a model of preparedness forother school districts. Montgomery has an exemplary multi-hazard crisis plan thatincludes specific instructions for schools developing their emergency plan anddistrict-wide responses. Included in this plan is a comprehensive checklist for schoolsthat outlines the specific responsibilities for: on-site emergency team planning;emergency/crisis support planning; practice drills; medical/special needs; andCommunication; a detailed set of instructions for each member of the incident commandteam by position. The district requires schools to communicate details of theparent/child reunification process to parents “near the beginning of each school yearthrough different methods, e.g. principal newsletters, school’s website, PTA meetings,etc. The district’s Emergency Response Plan addresses clearly the three differentemergency codes used in Montgomery: Code Red, Code Blue, and Code Blue Shelter-in-Place. The district also provides to each school a copy of the MCPS Emergency/CrisisManagement Response Manual that includes guidance on suspected chemical, biological,and radiological incidents. The schools in the district drill regularly. The district requirestwo code red and two code blue drills a year, in addition to 10 traditional fire drills.Parents are notified of these drills before they occur. Materials are available in Chinese,English, French, Korean, Spanish and Vietnamese. The district usesto relay information to parents.
17 Chicago, Illinois Number of Schools: 613 Students: 434,419 Failing grade25 percent of schools do not have an emergency plan of any kindAnother 50 percent of plans are inadequateSchool district, Police and Fire departments do not work together in planningNo back-up communication systemParents are poorly informedNo special supplies in the schoolDrills only include fire drillsNo guidance on suspected chemical, biological, and radiological incidentsThe district-wide Emergency Management Plan Manual does not adequatelyaddress terrorist threats including chemical,biological, nuclear, and radiologicalincidents. 25 percent of schools still do not have an emergency plan of any kind.And, according to Andres Durbak, director of School Safety, another 50 percentof Chicago public school plans vary in, as he put it, “mediocrities.” Durbankcannot name a counterpart at the Police or Fire Departments, it is a clear indicationthat they do not work together on a regular basis. The public school [district] hasan emergency plan; the police department has its own plan. The district has notprovided for back-up communication. Parents are poorly informed, Betty Carlvin,Principal, said that she did not send home information to parents, because mailing istoo expensive and “you don’t necessarily have correct addresses.” Chicago PublicSchools provides no readily available information for parents on its website on anykind of emergency, including terrorism. Carlvin also said that she had no specialsupplies in the school because they were not recommended by district officials.Chicago public schools limit their drilling to fire. One principal said “As far as othertypes of drills, we haven’t had the need.” No guidance on suspected chemical,biological, and radiological incidents
18 Providing emergency assistance immediately following a disaster ResponseProviding emergency assistance immediately following a disasterSchools have a key role to play in the response phase. The response phase Iinvolves providing emergency assistance and trying to reduce the likelihood offurther damage during and immediately following a disaster. If any type ofdisaster happens in the community during a school day, schools will beeither safe havens for students or will be responsible for safely reunitingthem with their families. If an event directly impacts a school, school personnelwill be the first responders on the scene, with responsibility for safeguardingstudents’ physical and mental health. However, few schools have nurses or otherhealth professionals on-site or available in sufficient numbers to recognize anoutbreak in progress or to handle a disaster situation without assistance fromother school staff or community responders. For example, a recent CaliforniaState PTA survey found that 25.8% of California public schools (which educateover 6.2 million students) never have a school nurse on campus (California StatePTA, 2003). School personnel will also have concerns about the well-being oftheir own children and families. During community-wide events, schools arealso often emergency assistance sites or staging areas for community response.
19 What is Currently Being Done? CDC’s Public Health Preparedness and Response for BioterrorismThe Metropolitan Medical Response System (MMRS)Dept of ED program to certify teachers and other school staff in first aid.CDC’s Public Health Preparedness and Response for Bioterrorism fundinghas provided $940 million to the states to upgrade state and local publichealth jurisdictions’ preparedness for and response to bioterrorism, otheroutbreaks of infectious disease, and other public health threats and emergencies.The funding addresses preparedness planning and readiness assessment,surveillance and epidemiology capacity, laboratory capacity, communicationsand information technology, health information dissemination, and education and training. The Metropolitan Medical Response System (MMRS) operates atthe local level to respond to a mass casualty event. The primary focus of the MMRSprogram is to develop or enhance existing emergency preparedness systemsto effectively respond to a public health crisis, until state or federal resourcesare mobilized. ED, in partnership with the American Red Cross, has created aprogram to certify teachers and other school staff in first aid. The first pilottraining program occurred in May 2003 in Montgomery County, Maryland. EDwill be conducting pilot training programs around the country in upcoming monthsto train school staff and provide students basic first aid and emergencypreparedness information that they can take home to their families.
20 What are the Gaps?Lack of coordination and communication between public health, education, and other first respondersState and local education agencies are not included on terrorism response planning committeesLittle attention has been given to the possibility that students might need to be quarantined at school. Schools and other first responders must be able to immediately address parent concerns about their children’s health and safety.As was clear in the Preparedness phase, lack of coordination and communicationbetween public health, education, and other first responders, remains a concernin the Response phase. State and local education agencies are not included onterrorism response planning committees mandated by various funding mechanisms.State and local agencies are not given meaningful information on how to involveeducation agencies and schools in the planning process. School personnel havenot typically been included in emergency response plans or trained in handlingmedical emergencies. Neither are mental health concerns typically addressed inthe response phase.Little attention has been given to the possibility that students might need to bequarantined at school, which could include being separated from parents.Communication with parents should be effective and efficient. Schools andother first responders must be able to immediately address parent concernsabout their children’s health and safety. Students with special health care needsneed particular consideration if sheltering-in-place or quarantine becomesnecessary. Schools need an adequate supply of medications and special medicalequipment to care for these students for up to 72 hours, as well as staff who aretrained in their care.
21 Incident Command System Assures uniformity of command structure used by various responding partiesProvides for common, easily understood languagePromotes a manageable span of command (typically no more than seven individuals reporting to one supervisor)Coordinates use of resourcesArranges for safety of respondersCoordinates messages to the public and the media
22 September 11, 2001“I learned an important lesson on that day…that I could only run as fast as my slowest child.”Teacher, P.S New York CityPhotos:Pedestrians scramble for safety in front of City Hall as the first World TradeCenter tower collapses after being hit by an aircraft.A businessman leaving the World Trade Center.
23 Uncommon Sense, Uncommon Courage How the New York City School System, Its Teachers, Leadership, and Students Responded to the Terror of September 11September 11 presented the greatest security challenge ever faced bythe New York City Board of Education. (BOE) The paramount object thatday was to “get our kids home safe.” This was accomplished thoroughseveral critical factors: organization, professional experience in thesystem, flexibility of standard operating procedures, safety simulationand practice, and personal courage.Two issues were paramount in the response: decision making andcommunication.
24 The Report Decision Making Transportation Facilities and Support Food ServicesCommunicationCurriculumMental HealthFiscalStudent SafetyKey FindingsThe immediate response and continued recovery actions taken by the New YorkCity Board of Education on 9/11 have been documented in this report. Primaryresearch came from 32 interviews conducted with decision makers and crisismanagement professionals across functional areas within the Board of Education,over a total time frame of about six months (October 2001 – March 2002).We will just look at 2 of these areas related to the response today:decision making and communication.
25 Timeline 8:46 am Plane hits Tower #1 WTC 9:02 Plane hits Tower #2 WTC; schools in immediate area evacuate9:21 subways and busses are disrupted; bridges and tunnels closed9:59 South tower #2 collapses10:29 North tower #1 collapses; airspace shut down9:57 pm closed schools next day1:00 am (9/12) all students accounted for
26 The scene……8 public schools within 1/4 mile of Ground Zero; 5 were in immediate danger9,000 students ages ; ALL were evacuated without injuryALL 1.1 million students in every part of the city got home safety2,800 people died in the towers, including 343 FDNY and 60 NYPD personnel1,493 students lost someone in their familyMany of the 9,000 witnessed the collapse of the towersThere are 8 schools within 1/4 mile of Ground Zero with 9,000 students -grammar, middle and high school. All were evacuated without injury, and all 1.1million students in New York City were reunited safely with family and lovedones.In the midst of this heroic effort, 2,800 people died, including 343 FDNYAnd 60 NYPD and Port Authority personnel. 1,493 students lost someonein their family. Many of the 9,000 witness the collapse of the towers.At BOE Chancellor Harold Levy decided to keep school open, making thecounter intuitive decision to delay reuniting children and families --- thus creatingan orderly release and transport for the students and staff. By 1 AM September12 all students in the school system were accounted for. Schools were closedon Wednesday, the 12th.
27 Disaster planning was key… Effective decision making is criticalEmergency response plans must be dynamicThe safety and well-being of responders must be a priorityCommunications will be compromisedResources will be stressedThe recovery phase usually lasts longer than once can predictThe “story” of the Board of Education and 9/11 should be read as a case studythat seeks to illustrate two important components of Disaster Planning: Responseand Recovery. However, what happened in response and recovery can be wovenback into a consideration of prevention/preparedness. What is clear from thecase study is that several aspects of disaster planning proved critical.Effective decision making on the part of those at the site of disaster is crucial. Theyshould be trained for this role prior to any event; 2. Emergency response plans needto be generic and dynamic enough to adapt to moment-to-moment requirements ofthe unfolding disaster; 3. The safety and well-being of responders including those inleadership roles must be a priority. Likewise, pay particular attention to those who aremost vulnerable including children and children with special needs. This focus has tocontinue into recovery stage; 4. Communications and communication systems willalways be compromised, if not fail, as the disaster unfolds. Plans must allow formultiple means of communication in times of incomplete information or totalcommunication blackout; 5. Resources will be stressed and must be assigned tothose, who need them most, first; 6. The recovery phase usually lasts longer andrequires far greater planning and far greater resources than one can predict.
28 Decision MakingSafe evacuation of all accomplished through on-the-ground decision makingResponding to the “unthinkable” requires intelligence, creativity, and courageFire drills were keyFollow plansChange plansThe response to this unthinkable terror was achieved through critical use ofon-the-ground decision making, informed by intelligence, creativity, and courage.The World Trade Center attack occurred on the fourth day of a new school year,before principals and teachers knew the students or the parents. Principals of the schoolsat Ground Zero would later stress the importance of fire drills and their rolein supporting the calm and orderly nature of the evacuation.Principals from each of the schools around Ground Zero contacted thesuperintendent’s office immediately after the first plane hit Tower #1. A preliminarydecision was that all students were to remain in the schools( structural stability andsafety). Principals allowed children to leave if their parents came to pick them up.Evacuation of schools began when the second plane hit the Tower #2. Two schoolslocated just 200 yards from the WTC had identified Stuyvesant High School as theirsafety location. However, they would have needed to go through the attack area to getthere, so the principal revised the plan -- all began walking south, away from the WTC.We heard this unbelievable rumble and everyone turned in disbelief.The building fell like a stack of cards. We walked together, told thekids to move quickly and keep their heads down. I wasn’t scared, itwas very communal… it was difficult to walk… (Principal’s description)
29 More decisions…… How students reached safety Fears that children were in danger, injured or deadTerrorism promotes a particular kind of chaosConsider geography in plansThe anecdotes concerning how students reached safety are many. Ninety-four ofthese students spent the night on cots at Curtis High School in Staten Islandafter taking the ferry from Manhattan. Principals and teachers flagged down atugboat at Battery Park that took some students to Upper Manhattan and Queens.Officials escorted many students on ferries to Staten Island and New JerseyOne principal walked her students across the Brooklyn Bridge to safety. In addition,community-based organizations played critical role in safe return of children.At Ground Zero, parent concern during these hours was exacerbated by disruptionsin communication and the need to deviate from safety plans. In addition, the chaos thatwas unfolding at the World Trade Center fed fears that children were in danger or worse,injured or dead. Terrorism promotes a particular kind of chaos. Keeping track of childrenat the primary school level was more effective than at the high school level. Likewise,the actions of BOE staff illustrated the need to be adaptive in response to unfoldingevents, while remaining vigilant to the highest priority of keeping children andstaff safe. School districts should seriously consider their geographical contours whendeveloping safety plans in an era of terrorism. The BOE personnel engaged in responding toterrorism at the WTC were acting with incomplete information. Nonetheless, theirdecisiveness was key to the well being of their students.
30 Communication Technological interruptions/failures Keep communication flowingCommunication into the BOECommunication from the BOEKeeping children safe and getting them reunited with their families was the underlying message that drove all communication on 9/11.Need to address issues of communication in two broad areas: the technologicalinterruptions and failures; and efforts to keep communication flowing at the operationslevel between individuals, within schools and the Board, even in the absence ofworking technology. The content and validity of the information impacts decision makingin any situation; in an attack, this information guides life and death decisions.Two main considerations of communication during the crisis for the BOE:1. what was the communication into the BOE from outside agencies and the public, and2. what was the communication from the BOE to the public and outside agencies aswell as to its own constituency. BOE received information from TV, radio, internet.In addition, critical information was shared by individuals physically transporting theirinformation – on foot – to the Central Administration of the BOE in Brooklyn.Office of Public Affairs coordinated all official info.BOE distributed information through its website and radio, , phones (hotline with40 operators). All were disrupted at one time or another! 120 languages spoken. Also,daily briefings with school Chancellor and Mayor Giuliani assured a consistent message.Keeping children safe and getting them reunited with theirfamilies was the underlying message that drove all communication on 9/11.
31 Communication Recommendations Communicate safety plans with parentsShare with other emergency responders the complete safety plansHave three redundant systems of communicationCoordinate these systems with emergency response agenciesPlan process to communicate with the mediaHave single and approved source of informationCommunicate safety plans, re: evacuation sites and plans for reunification, withparents and community groups. In this way, information is available and, parent andcommunity groups can be of assistance with these functions.2. Share with other emergency responders the complete safety plans and involvethem in the planning process. Include all elements including items such as anyinformation contained in the Tracking and Transportation System, food service, healthcare, facilities, communications, evacuation, student safety and accountability.3. Consider at least three redundant systems of communication,incorporating both simple and sophisticated forms of technology.Coordinate these systems with that of the emergency response agencies to assurethe ability to communicate with them.Ensure that a process of communicating with the media in times of catastropheis in place well before an event.Provide for a single and approved source of information to prevent conflictingmessages and confusion. Timely and accurate information is essential in a crisis and wasassured by Levy’s participation in Giuliani’s daily 9/11 briefings.
32 “No one is ready for something like this.” Harold O. Levy, Chancellor
33 High School of Leadership and Public Service ~Ada Dolch, Principal A leader who saw a situation, assessed it and engaged in on-the-ground decision makingA thorough knowledge of the physical layoutTools of communication - walkie-talkiesA well informed and talented professional staffWell developed evacuation plan that had been practicedA disciplined group of students who knew how to follow directivesA leader who advocated on behalf of her communityI would argue that we can be, and are, prepared for something like this.Ada Dolch is the Principal at the High School of Leadership and Public Service at whatis now Ground Zero. She epitomized the planning, forethought and decisiveness of decisionmakers on 9/11who moved quickly to get children to safety on a day of massive destructionthat by any estimation could have ended in causality. Ada Dolch’s effective leadership indealing with catastrophe meant a lot of things were in place by virtue of her management:1. A leader who saw a situation, assessed it and engaged in on-the-grounddecision making for the purpose of maintaining the well being of all in her responsibility.2. A thorough knowledge of the physical layout – including basement -- of the verticalbuilding that housed the school that informed the evacuation plan and implementation.3. Tools of communication linked into police channels. The walkie-talkies alsoallowed for coverage and rapid assessment of the situation throughout the entire building.4. A well informed and talented professional staff to implement evacuation.5. Well developed evacuation plan that had been practiced; language and codes whosemeaning is known to the professionals in the school.6. A disciplined group of students who knew how to follow directives and directions whosupported each other in responding to the order to evacuate.7. A leader who advocated on behalf of her community. The educational and psychologicalwellbeing of students and staff as well as the renovation of the physical plant—the building.
34 Table - top Exercise Form into groups of participants. You are the school crisis team for Anywhere Elementary School (grades K - 5; 400 students) in a district of 25,000 students. The principal has called you together as the crisis team one evening at 7:00PM. The principal tells you that one of your 3rd grade students, Emily, has been found murdered in the park one block from your school. The news will be reported on the 11:00 PM news broadcast. The family has been notified.Who will be impacted? What emotions will you probably see?What will you do to support the students and staff the next day?Allow minutes for the 2 parts of this exercise, Have participantswork in groups, then share ideas with the larger group after each part.
35 Exercise, part 2Additional news: it is now 2 weeks after the murder. No suspect has been arrested though there has been extensive media coverage.A second elementary age student, from a different school in the area, is found murdered. There are no witnesses and no leads to the suspect. The next day a third student (from a third school) is found murdered.At this time the superintendent receives a note that says, “Your children are not safe anywhere at anytime.”What additional steps does your crisis team take to ensure the safety of your students?How do these additional murders impact the students and staff at your school?
36 RecoveryRestoring people to physical and mental health; restoring vital systemsSchools are uniquely positioned to provide normalization and security to childrenand should be a part of recovery efforts. The recovery phase includes engaging inshort-term efforts to restore people to physical and mental health and vital systemsto minimum operating conditions; and long-term efforts to restore entire disasterareas to previous conditions or better. Schools should remain open whenever possible.Keeping students engaged in their regular routine, including attending school, is akey to maintaining their resiliency. However, school buildings may be damaged orcontaminated and in need of repair before classes can resume and services can beoffered. Alternate locations may be needed if school buildings need extensive repairsor rebuilding. Transportation systems to and from school also may be damaged. Themental health of students is an essential ingredient for meeting schools’ academicmission: Students suffering from anxiety, PTSD, or grieving the loss of friends orloved ones will have difficulty learning. Mental health services can be deliveredthrough schools, particularly in underserved areas, in order to efficiently reach alarge number of children. Schools provide an optimal location for discussion,peer, and adult support.
37 What is Currently Being Done? Project School Emergency Response to Violence (Project SERV)Guide for Intermediate and Long-Term Mental Health Services after School-Related Violent EventsCoping with Traumatic Events, Tips for TeachersNational Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN)Trauma Information Pamphlet for TeachersImmediately following the events of September 11th, ED made $8.9 million ofProject School Emergency Response to Violence (Project SERV) funds availableto the New York City Board of Education, and state educational agencies in NewYork, New Jersey, Connecticut, Virginia, Maryland, and Washington D.C. Fundsawarded to the state educational agencies were distributed to school districts thatwere impacted by September 11th. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration(SAMHSA), in collaboration with Project SERV, has developed a Guide forIntermediate and Long-Term Mental Health Services after School-Related ViolentEvents. SAMHSA also developed a guide on Coping with Traumatic Events, Tips forTeachers which provides tools to assist teachers to develop students’ emotional andpsychological coping and resilience skills during times of crisis. SAMHSA funds theNational Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN) to raise the standard of careand improve access to services for traumatized children, their families, and communitiesthroughout the United States. The Trauma Psychiatry Program at UCLA, as part ofthe NCTSN, has produced a Trauma Information Pamphlet for Teachers. Thispamphlet includes information on types of posttraumatic stress reactions, consequencesof these reactions for adolescents, things that make these reactions worse, andinformation on how teachers can help.
38 What are the Gaps?Only a small percentage of children in the United States receive the mental health treatment they needLack of information on baseline mental health of children in the absence of a terrorist event.Anxious or ill children do not learn wellLittle information is available to help school officials understand what remediation actions are needed after a terrorist eventOnly a small percentage of children in the United States receive the mental healthtreatment they need. For those children who do receive needed mental healthservices, schools are the primary providers. However, short- and long-term mentalhealth services in schools or tied to schools remain scarce. In addition, there is a lackof information on baseline mental health of children in the absence of a terrorist event.Children who are displaced from their schools due to a terrorist event, disrupting their dailyroutines for an extended period of time, are likely to be at increased risk for post-eventdifficulties. In addition, anxious or ill children do not learn well, jeopardizing theschool’s academic mission. Most schools are not well-equipped to address the mentalhealth needs of students, and staff, after a terrorist event. Project SERV andFEMA/SAMHSA activities should be coordinated to prevent gaps in serviceprovision. Schools may be inundated with outside proposals to provide services andconduct research. Schools must review these to determine their appropriateness for thesetting and to balance the needs for supportive intervention and normalization. Schoolofficials are responsible for ensuring the physical safety of school buildings and grounds.Little information is available to help school officials understand what remediationactions are needed to ensure the safety of school property after a terrorist event, especiallyan event involving biological, chemical, or radiological agents. Nor is there guidance forschools about when it is safe to reopen damaged school buildings.
39 Emotional Responses to Terror/Trauma FearLoss of controlAngerLoss of stabilityConfusionNational Association of School Psychologists:Terrorist attacks in our country and threats or realities of war are frighteningexperiences for all Americans. Children may be especially fearful that threatened oractual military action overseas will result in more personal loss and violence here athome. For many, the guidance of caring adults will make the difference betweenbeing overwhelmed and developing life-long emotional and psychological copingskills. Teachers and caretakers can help restore children’s sense of security by modelingcalm and in-control behavior. Limit exposure to media.Fear: Fear may be the predominant reaction--fear for the safety of those in the military aswell as fear for their own safety.Loss of control :Lack of control can be overwhelming and confusing.Anger: Anger is a common reaction. Unfortunately, anger is often expressed at those towhom children are closest. Children may direct anger toward classmates and neighborsbecause they can’t express their anger toward terrorists.Loss of stability :War or military deployment interrupts routines. It is unsettling. Childrencan feel insecure when their usual schedules and activities are disrupted, increasing theirlevel of stress and need for reassurance.Confusion: First, children may feel confused about terrorist attacks and war, what furtherdangers might arise, and when the violence will stop. Second, children may have troubleunderstanding the difference between violence as entertainment and the real events takingplace on the news.
40 9/11: A long road to recovery Occurred during regular school hours thus causing immediate and severe psychological trauma - students and staff1600 students and 900 staff members lost family membersGreat potential for post traumatic stress disorder syndromeThe attack of 9/11 occurred during regular school hours and caused immediateand severe psychological trauma for students and staff- particularly for those inthe immediate area of the World Trade Center. During evacuation, children andstaff saw people jumping from buildings, evaded falling debris, and witnessedthe horror of the collapsing buildings. The impact of September 11 on the studentsin NYC is estimated to be very long term.Many of the children were screaming for their parents who actuallyworked in the towers. As one teacher stepped into the street, asmall child saw the burning bodies falling from the tower and criedout, “Look, teacher, the birds are on fire!“The magnitude of the impact on the system in human terms is the loss of family membersto (about) 1600 students and 900 staff members. Huge numbers of parents lost their jobsas well…no one can accurately measure how long trauma will last or even when itwill first appear…post traumatic syndrome is a genuine issue and can be triggered threeor four years later with stimulators like police and fire sirens…”~ BOE Official
41 The Partnership for the Recovery in New York City Schools Within 24 hours, recommendations given on:how to explain the factual details of the disasterhow to reassure children of their and their families’ safetyhow to connect children’s individual grief and feelings of loss with the grief and feelings of loss of their communitiesResource guides provided to both parents and teachers on how to deal with and recognize the effects of traumaPersonal letters of condolenceThe decision makers handling the response and recovery around mental healthreached out to experts, who formed The Partnership for the Recovery in New YorkCity Schools. The Children’s Health Alliance (CHMA), headed by Dr. Pam Cantor, isan advisory group who contracted with the BOE to coordinate mental health servicesthrough the Partnership for Recovery in New York City Schools.Within a day of the disaster, the Board of Education provided its superintendents, principals,teachers, and staff with guidance on how to address the immediate needs of students.Specific recommendations and instructions were given on:how to explain the factual details of the disaster to children; 2. how to reassure childrenof their and their families’ safety; 3. how to connect children’s individual grief and feelingsof loss with the grief and feelings of loss of their communities. The U.S. Department ofEducation and FEMA provided funds for initial needs assessments.Resource guides were provided to both parents and teachers that referencedliterature on how to deal with and recognize the effects of trauma on children.Feedback from teachers indicates that this information was very helpful inenabling them to respond to the disaster effectively in their classrooms. TheBoard of Education also sent out personal letters of condolence to every family inthe school system that lost an immediate family member.
42 Expanded mental health services FEMA’s 60-day grant included: grief counseling, individual and group interventions, and the development of multi-disciplinary approaches to treatmentDirect services to children and families provided via a tier system: school-based services referred people to community-based organizations and to hospitalsMany mental health professionals offered their services pro bono$5 million US Dept. of Ed Project SERV grantQuality control considerationsStudents from schools in the immediate WTC vicinity needed expanded mentalhealth services that could not be provided by existing school-based mental healthprofessionals. Likewise, children system-wide were experiencing trauma and lossand increased services were required to support these students. The initial program,funded by FEMA’s 60-day grant, included: grief counseling, individual and groupinterventions, and the development of multi-disciplinary approaches to treatmentby instructional and counseling staff within schools. Direct services to children andfamilies were provided via a tier system: school-based services referred people tocommunity-based organizations and to hospitals. It is important that schools preplan forthese events by developing relationships with consultants, mental heath professionalsand organizations for referral to allow for the creation of a mental health crisis plan.Many mental health professionals offered their services pro bono. The teacher’s unionsmostly dealt with the immediate needs of teachers and school staff. The experience of 9/11volunteer response is twofold, many individuals will want to help, and that mechanismsfor screening them is essential. Likewise, the tools of handling in the enormous numberof calls include: phone hotlines and a very well informed group of individuals handlingthose hotlines.
43 Additional mental health support debriefing session with Board of Education personnelmental health assessment comprised of a sample of 10,000 childrenPTSD symptoms: major depression, general anxiety, agoraphobia, separation anxiety, and conduct disorderThe Board also recognized the stressors this type of disaster put on its own staffand, therefore, brought in professionals from New York University to do adebriefing session with Board of Education personnel. Debriefing sessions were anopportunity for people to talk about their specific experience of 9/11, in aneffort to help them sort out their own feelings and issues surrounding thetragedy.A mental health assessment comprised of a sample of 10,000 children from 100 schools.The results were not surprising. Large numbers of students exhibited symptomsconsistent with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder -- major depression, generalanxiety, agoraphobia, separation anxiety, and conduct disorder. The assessmentnot only identified areas for immediate concern, it also set the framework foranticipating future problems, and will contribute to our knowledge base about reactionsexperienced as a result of trauma.
44 CurriculumTo foster a deeper comprehension about the events of 9/11, in terms of grief and loss, and ward off violence toward those who were Muslim or appeared to be Muslim.Goals:help students handle the grief and angerwork with concepts of conflict resolutionto develop a context of learning around the issuesThe Board of Education developed a two-phase strategy for implementation of thecurriculum dealing with the events of September 11, It focused on understandingthe event from a number of different perspectives including those of a political, social andeconomic framework. An anti-bias curriculum sought to expose students to critical thinkingabout what it was to remain a community wherein diversity and difference was respected.The goal of the effort in response was to develop materials that would foster a deepercomprehension about the events of 9/11, in terms of grief and loss, as well as to ward offviolence toward those who were Muslim or appeared to be Muslim. The second set ofmaterials dealt with the socio-political realities of the United States finding itself in a “war onterrorism”. The first phase had three goals:To give advice to teachers on how to help students handle the grief and anger, while alsopresenting issues for discussion on terrorism and terrorists. An important objective, as hadbeen stated, was to protect against or militate against any bias-attacks or blame directedat Arab-Americans. “Hate Hurts” curriculum of the Anti-Defamation League was used.To suggest ways to work with concepts of conflict resolution. Faith Based Organizationswere consulted on this part of the curriculum not only to develop guidelines and content butalso to ask them to monitor any bias related events.3. To establish a common set of definitions and language with which to develop a context oflearning around the issues. The geography of Afghanistan and Pakistan was presented.
45 NYC: Two Years Later “Keep kids safe and they will be able to learn” ~Ada Dolch, PrincipalHigh School of Leadership and Public Service at Ground ZeroPost 9/11, questions remain about recovery in the schools as well as how thesystem would be able to react to any new catastrophe. 24 months after 9/11,this report as a testament to a community and its resiliency as found inthe story of students, teachers and staff at a High School at Ground Zero. It also,however, offers a perspective that at least at the systems level, the lessons of9/11 may not be fully absorbed, or even fully articulated. This perspective is atonce, both a caution and a call to action. It suggests that we do not knowenough, we have not shared our information enough, and we are not preparedenough to counter the threats of the day. We need to alter this situation.
46 Deeper and more professional ties with emergency management officials. We need to be better prepared… much better prepared than we are now.” ~ Gregory Thomas, Director, National Center for Disaster PreparednessDeeper and more professional ties with emergency management officials.The allocation of appropriate budgets to safety departments. A moratorium on budget cuts for a 2-3 year period.The development of training materials tailored for: principals, assistant principals, teachers, staff and children.Gregory Thomas worked as the Director of Safety for the Board of Education on9/11. In July 2003, he transitioned to the National Center for Disaster Preparedness,the Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University. Thomas commends theactions of his colleagues in New York on 9/11 but Thomas sees gaps in most school systems’ability to respond to similar catastrophic events. For him, prevention and preparedness(the two p’s) allow for the highest degrees of successful response and recovery(the two r’s). As he states: “We have to go after this with an attitude that terrorism willhappen again. It is not the question of if anymore, but the question of what the nextevent is going to be. By preparing for the “imaginable” we prepare for the“unimaginable”. School systems and districts can develop these right now:1. Deeper and more professional ties with emergency management officials.2. The allocation of appropriate budgets to the departments within School systemsresponsible for safety. This needs to include a consideration of a moratorium on budgetcuts for a 2-3 year period, so as to ensure the financial support for adequate training andre-tooling of the professionals as well as emerging staffing needs.3. The development of training materials tailored for groups such as: principals and assistantprincipals, teachers, staff and children. The materials for children, of course, would beage sensitive.
47 ~ Gregory Thomas, Director, National Center for Disaster Preparedness Sharing of knowledge on a coordinated basis by those individuals directly involved in 9/11 as well as in other school based disasters, like school shootings.The engagement of parents, and community in planning and preparedness with specific reference to their role in ensuring the safety and wellbeing of the students.4. The capture of information and sharing of knowledge on a coordinated basis byThose individuals directly involved in 9/11 as well as in other school baseddisasters, like school shootings. Typically, information is shared within professionalgroups, but not across them and not on a consistent basis.5. The engagement of parents, community and civically based organizations inplanning and preparedness with specific reference to their role in ensuring thesafety and wellbeing of the school populations.
48 What we’ve learned…….While we may not be able to prevent every major crisis, we can take actions to minimize the effects.Major crises ~ natural and manmade ~ have a significant impact on schools, even when not directed at schools.Dealing with mental health issues of students and staff is essential to the recovery process.Every school must have a “multi-hazard” safety plan.
49 What we’ve learned…….Schools need to foster linkages with communities: fire, police, mental health, victim services.Practice makes perfect. Make schools a part of larger community drills.Plan ahead. Things can be done today that will help you tomorrow.Keeping schools safe is hard work!
50 Our Challenge“We have to go after this with an attitude that terrorism will happen again. It is not the question of if anymore, but the question of what the next event is going to be.By preparing for the “imaginable” we prepare for the“unimaginable”.~ Gregory Thomas, Director, National Center for Disaster Preparedness (2004)
51 National Association of School Psychologists Terrorism Workgroup: Cathy Kennedy Paine, Chair. Special Services Coordinator, Springfield School District, Springfield, OregonCraig Apperson, Program Supervisor, School Safety & Security Programs, Washington State Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction, Olympia, WashingtonJenny Wildy, School Psychology Graduate Student, Eastern Kentucky UniversityRalph E. (Gene) Cash, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Nova Southeastern University, Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
52 Sources used in this presentation: Apperson, C.D. OSPI Learning and Teaching Support.Brill, Steven, and Phinney, Allison. (2004) Preparedness in America’s Schools: A Comprehensive Look at Terrorism Preparedness in America’s Largest School Districts. America Preparedness Campaign, Inc.Brock, S.E., Sandoval, J., and Lewis, S. (2001) Preparing for Crises in the Schools, second edition. New York: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.Degnan, A. N. , (2004) Uncommon Sense, Uncommon Courage: How the New York City School System, Its Teacher, Leadership, and Students Responded to the Terror of September 11. New York: Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health.Diaz, A. (2003) National Advisory Committee on Children and Terrorism: Recommendations to the Secretary. Atlanta, Georgia: Centers for Disease Control.Ingraham, L.M. (2003) Terrorism Supplement to the Checklist for a Safe and Secure School Environment. Indiana Department of Education.International Meeting on Helping Schools Prepare for and respond to Terrorist Attacks. February 13-14, Washington, D.C.Murphy, G.R., Davies, H.J., and Plotkin, M. (2004) Managing a Multijurisdictional Case: Identifying the Lessons Learned from the Sniper Investigation. Washington D.C: Police Executive Research Forum.Practical Information of Crisis Planning: A Guide for Schools and Commuinities. (2003) U.S. Department of Education.Schools and Terrorism. (2003) A Supplement to the National Advisory Committee on Children and Terrorism: Recommendations to the Secretary. Atlanta, Georgia: Centers for Disease Control.
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