Safety and security protocols, procedures, plans
Safety and security protocols, procedures, and planning
Posted on 11/01/2018
Safety and security protocols, procedures, and planning

In today’s world, the safety and security of students is at the forefront of the school district’s priorities every day.

It is the goal of the Puyallup School District to ensure every student and staff member is trained and prepared for emergencies.

While school safety plans and procedures have been in place for many years and are practiced regularly, recent tragic events at schools across the nation have put the spotlight on taking security to a new level. Preparation and training goes far beyond fire and earthquake drills.

Washington state requires all public school districts to have current school safety plans and procedures in place. The Puyallup School District continues to strive towards a “forward-thinking” approach around this passionately tough and critically significant topic.

With more than 22,400 students attending Puyallup schools each day, essential security controls and emergency preparedness are ongoing to ensure safe schools.

The district recognizes four major categories that are essential for emergency preparedness and prevention: Preparedness; Security Systems & Personnel; Climate & Culture; and Communication. 

All HazardAll Hazardous Preparedness

Every school in the district has an emergency plan in place that is unique to the school. It covers preparation, response, and recovery if an event occurs. Each site’s guide is tailored to the characteristics, building layout, neighborhood, hazards, and police and fire district.

The district works in partnership with the Puyallup Police Department, Pierce County Sheriff’s Department, Central Pierce Fire & Rescue, and Pierce County Emergency Management. These emergency response teams provide training to staff.

Schools in the district are required to hold safety drills each month. All staff and students participate in the drills. They practice and prepare for fire, lockdown, earthquake, shelter-in-place, mapping, lahar, and reunification.

SecuritySecurity Systems and Personnel

Ensuring the safety of students and staff includes the investment of security systems and personnel. All 22 elementary and seven junior high buildings have video and a controlled access entry point. Those entering the building are granted access by office personnel, unless they have an authorized entry card.

The district contracts with Pierce County Sheriff’s Department and Puyallup Police Department to provide six full-time School Resource Officers. In addition, there are 17 campus security officers that provide security and support at all secondary schools. Campus security train monthly with local law enforcement, fire, and other emergency response entities.

The district has invested in one of the most robust state-of-the-art security systems in the nation. There are 690 cameras installed. In the event of an emergency, local emergency response teams have the ability to log into the system and control automatic doors, access intercoms, and view the event live.

Climate and CultureClimate and Culture

School safety includes investing in students’ social and emotional needs. The climate of the school is vital in setting the stage for this success. Putting resources in the school environment where students feel safe, cared for, and supported gives students the sense of being connected.

Beginning in kindergarten, part of each elementary student’s curriculum is “Second Step.”  The schoolwide curriculum teaches students how to manage emotions, develop empathy, and develop problem-solving skills.




CommunicationsCommunication

Communication is a key element, and the information the district receives is vitally important. The district has an anonymous tip line called SafeSchools Alert. The tip line is the district’s reporting service. This allows individuals to report something that could potentially be harmful to students or oneself. It is available to all students, staff, parents, and community members. Reporting can be done by phone or online at any time.

The district has created a School Emergency Information Guide for Parents. The guide gives parents valuable information on what to do in a school emergency, how to be prepared, safety terms and procedures, and what to do following an emergency.