Article: Vinton County Schools Emergency Procedures

Should an emergency or disaster situation ever arise in our area while school is in session, we want you to be aware that the schools have made preparations to respond effectively to such situations.

Should we have a major disaster during school hours, your student(s) will be cared for at this school. Our School District has a detailed emergency operations plan which has been formulated to respond to a major catastrophe.

Your cooperation is necessary in any emergency.

1. Do not telephone the school. Telephone lines may be needed for emergency communication.

2. In the event of a serious emergency, students will be kept at their schools until they are picked up by an

identified and responsible adult. That person must be listed on the emergency medical form and/or release form. Please be sure you consider the following criteria when you authorize another person to pick up your child at school:

*He/she is 18 years of age or older.

*He/she is usually home during the day.

*He/she could walk to school, if necessary.

*He/she is known to your child.

*He/she is both aware and able to assume this responsibility.

3. Turn your radio to a local station for emergency announcements. If students are to be kept at school,

radio stations will be notified. If electrical service is not affected, information will be relayed via the School District website and/or School Messenger. In addition, information regarding day-to-day school operations will be available by calling the District Office.

4. Impress upon your children the need for them to follow the directions of any school personnel in times of an emergency

Students will be released only to parents and persons identified on the School District Emergency Card. During an extreme emergency, students will be released at designated reunion gates located on school campuses. Parents should become familiar with the School Emergency Disaster Plan and be patient and understanding with the student release process. Please instruct your student to remain at school until you or a designee arrives. Because local telephone service may be disrupted, also list an out-of-State contact on the emergency card, as calls may still be made out of the area while incoming calls are affected.

The decision to keep students at school will be based upon whether or not streets in the area are open. If this occurs, radio stations will be notified. In the event that a natural disaster takes place during the time that students are being transported, students will be kept on the bus and the driver will ask for assistance through radio contact with the school and district personnel. Any child who is home waiting for the bus will not be picked up (if roads are impassable) and remains the responsibility of the parent or guardian.

In the event a natural disaster occurs in the afternoon, the driver will make every attempt to continue delivering the students to their homes. Should road conditions prevent the driver from delivering students to their home or to school in the morning, the students will be delivered to the nearest school site and that school will communicate with the home school to inform them of the students’ whereabouts.

In case of a hazardous release event (chemical spill) near the school area, Shelter-in-Place procedures will be implemented to provide in place protection. All students and staff will clear the fields, report to their rooms and all efforts will be made to prevent outside air from entering classrooms during the emergency. "Shelter-in-Place" signs will be placed in classroom windows or hung outside classroom doors during a drill or emergency. Students arriving at school during a Shelter-in-Place drill or event should report to the school office or to a previously designated area at the school because classrooms will be inaccessible.

When the dangerous incident has subsided, an all-clear signal will be given. Please discuss these matters with your immediate family. Planning ahead will help alleviate concern during emergencies.

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