Schools across the United States felt the impact of the May 24 school shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, which killed 19 students and two teachers. The Lincoln County School District recently discussed the district’s safety measures at its schools in a YouTube update.
Lincoln County School District Superintendent Dr. Karen Gray and School District Safety Coordinator Sue Graves shared methods and practices designed to keep students and staff safe.
Graves said the school district takes safety very seriously. The district has safety and security strategies to keep students and staff safe.
“We have a comprehensive all-hazards emergency plan that was developed with all five law enforcement agencies and eight Lincoln County fire departments,” Gray said.
The school district has great collaborations with police and fire departments, Graves added.
“It’s a very good plan designed for the Lincoln County School District,” Graves said.
Drills are important for the district to practice responding to different types of emergencies.
“We have to be prepared for every type of emergency,” Graves said. “We have a district-wide exercise program that is far more robust than what the state requires for our exercises. We do at least one exercise a month. Most months we do several exercises.
These include fire drills, lockdown drills, reserve evacuation, earthquake drills and more. The school district has a code yellow and code red lockdown.
“With our code yellow lockdown, it’s a low-level lockdown that we primarily use to limit movement around the school,” Graves said.
Graves said code yellow could be used for a medical emergency. The lock would ensure the privacy of the person having the medical emergency.
“The code red lockout is for really serious situations, like there’s already been an active shooter situation,” Graves said.
Code red lockdown includes locking doors and everyone on the floor to make it look like no one is in the classroom.
Each school has a threat assessment team consisting of a school administrator, a mental health specialist, and a school resource officer or law enforcement officer.
“These threat assessment teams have this collective wisdom that they use when working on threat assessment,” Graves said.
Safe Oregon will forward this tip to the school district.
Graves said that with every new safety measure the district puts in place, it reduces the risk.
“Whenever students and families have concerns, if they report those concerns, we all work together to reduce risk and improve safety in our schools,” Graves said. “If anyone would like to learn more about our security processes, protocols and procedures, they can go to our website and check out the security section.”