The primary concern for the Rowan County School District is to ensure the safety and security of our students while they are in our schools. The administration, faculty and staff members attend many safety and security trainings and conduct numerous drills throughout the school year.
Per Kentucky law (KRS 158.162, KRS 158.164), each school is required to conduct at least one (1) fire drill per month and at least two (2) tornado, earthquake and lockdown drills each school year. To alleviate any confusion or concern, these drills will be announced in advance.
Each school has also developed its own unique emergency lockdown procedures that coordinate with the Emergency Operations Procedures developed by the Rowan County School District. The District and the schools worked closely with our local law enforcement and emergency response agencies in developing their plans and continue this close relationship to secure the safety of both students and staff. These agencies will often use our facilities to conduct active shooter trainings as well as other emergency response drills.
Often, terminology used in emergency notifications can lead to misunderstandings. Therefore, we have included terms that may help should an event occur and notification is necessary.
A lockdown will be called for if there is a credible threat that an intruder has entered a building or is attempting to gain entrance to one of our facilities. All classroom and exterior doors are locked.
Soft (Perimeter) Lock Down:
A soft or perimeter lockdown is called for if an event is occurring outside of the building, on or near campus, or at another school in the district. All exterior doors are locked. Please note: A soft or perimeter lockdown can be upgraded to a lockdown should the situation escalate.
Shelter in Place:
This term may be used for multiple school purposes to keep students inside the building in the event a perceived threat is outside the building and a fire alarm is pulled. Procedurally, all doors are locked, saving time in the event that a lockdown is necessary.
Schools have the following safety procedures in place:
- Visitor Registry
- ID Badges
- Controlled Access
- School Resource Officers
- Stop Bleeds Training and Certifications
- Call Messenger Notification System
- AEDs and training
- FEMA training
In the meantime, it is vital that you, as parents/guardians, take the time to have a discussion with your children concerning the drills that are conducted at their school and their responsibility to report any suspicious person/activity. Some important talking points are:
- Please take drills seriously! The purpose of a drill is to identify weaknesses and build confidence in the participants.
- Students must walk in groups, not alone.
- Students should avoid distractions, such as the use of cell phones.
- Please remind your children to pay attention to their surroundings. If they see someone or something that appears suspicious or out of place, remind your children to speak with a member of school personnel. Teach your children to communicate with you and/or school personnel to be the eyes and ears. Remember the saying: See Something, Say Something!
- If a student is approached by a stranger, he or she should resist and run. Yell for help and report the incident immediately.
In the event a school calls a lockdown, please do not attempt to enter the school or the school grounds. This action could put you and your child in danger. Please follow any and all directions given both in the phone message and by school personnel/law enforcement. You will be given as much information as possible, without negatively affecting any police investigation. Information about a situation will be released once the safety of the students has been established.
Note: It is important to realize that all emergency lockdown procedures and the District’s Emergency Operations Procedures are the best guidelines by which we try to follow. However, each situation is different and, as always, the safety of students and staff is the primary concern of the Rowan County School District.