OSPI November 2020 School Safety Blog

Mike Donlin | OSPI School Safety Center
Oct 31, 2020
Safety blog


November! We have crossed another threshold. Moving into November, we made it through our first ever COVID Great ShakeOut, and Halloween, had a blue moon, fell back to standard time, and are anxiously (nervously?) awaiting the results of the Presidential election. We will close out the month with a well-deserved long Thanksgiving weekend. So much is happening!

This is an excellent time to review and revise your district’s and school’s Comprehensive School Safety (EOP) Plan. As you and your planning teams do this, here are some things to consider:

  • Current, updated comprehensive safety (EOP) plans are required by RCW 28A.320.125.
  • The School Safety Center provides resources on a wide range on safety topics and issues. Check out the Federal REMS TA Center topic-specific planning resources, as well. Assess your existing risks and hazards. Prioritize. Budget for your needs. Prioritize again.
  • No school safety topic or issue stands alone; all are interconnected and interdependent.
  • RCW 28A.320.125 references the school mapping system. Although it is still noted as a component of your EOP, expect changes during the coming year. There will be more information on school mapping as we move forward.
  • Build your required Behavioral Threat Assessment program into your EOP as your Threat Assessment Annex.
  • The same advice applies to your Suicide Prevention and Behavioral Health plans.
  • If your district has an SRO program, and your school has an SRO, the required components of that program should also be incorporated into the comprehensive school safety plan.
  • And don’t forget the weather! Many of us may be working remotely, but winter is approaching! The National Weather Service is predicting a La Niña period through most of the winter months. That means cooler and wetter conditions for us. Stay warm and dry!

Finally, as we approach Thanksgiving, thank you to AWSP for its representation on the School Safety and Student-Well Being Advisory Committee and several safety workgroups and committees. Your efforts are very much appreciated.

For more information on any or all the topics and issues noted here, please feel free to contact our office.

Stay safe and healthy. Happy Thanksgiving!

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