Student Safety Procedures Safety and security for all students and staff is of the utmost concern and highest priority for OPUSD. OPUSD regularly conducts emergency related drills (Lockdowns, Fire, Earthquake) to make sure all parties know proper procedures to follow in order to protect our students to our greatest ability.
Emergency Situation During an Emergency, school administrators may secure the campus through a “lockdown” or “shelter in place”. Administrators would make an announcement stating that the school is either in a lockdown or shelter in place mode.. Administrators would then make a sweep of the campus to ensure that everyone is as safe as possible. Classrooms and administrative offices would have their doors locked. No one should be exiting or entering the campus until the school administrator gives the “all clear” signal. If there is an immediate danger, teachers would stop their lessons, close their doors, shut their blinds, turn off their lights, silence their cell phones and direct their students to the most secure area in the classroom or in the nearest room. During an Active Shooter situation teachers have been taught the “run, hide or fight” method. School personnel will work closely with public safety officials during an emergency.
Parent and student reunification During an emergency situation, students may be kept on campus. In the event of an emergency lockdown, health and safety responders, police, or the fire department may direct the school to keep students on campus or in classrooms, even after school hours. Each classroom is stocked with emergency kits to handle extended stays in a classroom with access to portable bathrooms, water, and food.
- In this type of emergency, students may only be released to an adult who has been identified as a parent, a guardian or an emergency contact on the student’s emergency card (from when you registered your student). It is important that you complete this information at the beginning of every school year. If you need to make updates throughout the year, please do so via our Student Information System “Parent Connect.”
- Photo Identification - This requirement applies to all families. If you do not have a photo ID, your student may not be released or it may cause significant delays.
- Patience - In most situations, there will be a large number of families who choose to pick up their student after an emergency situation. This may result in an extended wait time as we verify ID’s and call students to the reunification area.
Student’s role in an emergency Students should understand and follow all plans applicable to the given crisis.
- Remain calm and reassure fellow classmates.
- In the absence of adult direction, students can decide where it is safest to be and remain there.
- If a violent situation occurs, notify the nearest school staff member.
- Share all relevant information with law enforcement, teachers, and school staff.
- During and after a crisis, to the extent that is safe, keep your belongings with you but do not go back for anything until receiving clearance. Do not pick anything up.
- Don’t phone or text unless you are an eyewitness, have important information to share or have information pertaining to injuries to students or staff.
- Do not perpetuate rumors. This includes cell or text messaging. We want parents and student to have accurate information, not rumors.
What do we ask of parents during an emergency?
- Please keep the school phone lines free for emergency use, do not call the school. The school will send out information via text message or our all call system and possibly through the news media. This will include information about when and where to pick up your student.
- Kanan Road and Lindero Canyon Road will have heavy traffic with emergency vehicles needing access, so we ask you to either park at the nearest grocery store and walk to the school or, if you live in the community, to walk from your house to pick up your child. We do not want to cluster or jam the roads that emergency vehicles will be needing to access. District of Choice parents please have a carpool adult listed on your emergency contacts, so we can release them to your carpool.
- If you speak with your student on a cell phone, please remind them of the importance of following the directions of their teachers and all other safety officials. As a reminder, at the elementary levels, siblings are paired up for release at the school's best ability.
- Frequently rumors may surface. Rely on factual information from the school district or law enforcement.
If you have not already texted that you are willing to receive text messages during an emergency situation, below are the directions to follow. We encourage all parents/guardians to update their emergency contacts through “Q” throughout the school year when contacts, health conditions or medications are changed. Please do not hesitate to contact your school if you have any questions regarding our safety plans and procedures.
In the event of an emergency, proper and clear communication is an often overlooked element of managing a crisis. Generally, the most effective way we have of communicating with parents and staff is by text message. We have a text message alert system that allows us to send out important information as needed.
When you registered your child(ren), you should have provided a mobile phone number or multiple numbers. We will only use text messaging in the event of an EMERGENCY and we will not use it for any other purpose. For example, in the event of a wildfire and a school is closed during the day, we would send information about where to pick up students. If school were to be canceled for any reason, including weather, fire, earthquake, etc, this is how we would notify you. If parents are to stay away from a school, as ordered by first responders, this is how you would know. Depending on the situation, following the instructions sent by us could be life-saving and not following them, life-threatening. It is essential that ALL parents and staff are able to receive the messages. In addition, one of the most reliable, real-time source to monitor active disaster situations is https://www.vcemergency.com.
How do I go about reviewing my school’s safety plan? A copy of each schools safety plan is in the front office of every school and available for review. Please email your school’s principal or office manager if you would like access to review the safety binder.