Children and Emergencies: Preparing Your Family

What to do about school:
It's important for parents to know the preparedness plans of the day care or school facilities where their children might be in the event of a disaster or emergency during the day. Parents who are at work, traveling or otherwise not at home, and have to pick up their children suddenly need to be able to decide which child is picked up first, second, third, etc.

At the same time parents who are unable to pick up their children during these circumstances have to know what arrangements and security measures will be implemented in their absence. This knowledge will help reduce the stress, anxiety and panic that normally will occur. Use the following questions as a guide to informally audit each of the facilities where children are during the day or other times as appropriate.

• Does each school/day care facility have plans and specific procedures to deal with various types of emergencies and disasters including school violence and natural disasters?

• Does the school have a training plan for all teachers, administrative aides, administrators and substitute teachers so they will know their responsibilities during an emergency?

• Does the school have transportation plans in the event of an evacuation and plans for notification of parents?

Reprinted with permission. Copyright © 2004 by Emergency Preparedness Educational Institute(sm)

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