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Published on March 14, 2008

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Emergency Preparedness and Pandemic Flu Planning: A Community Forum Genesse Community College August 14, 2006 Emergency Preparedness for Schools: The New Reality Presented by Gregory A. Thomas, MS Director National Center for Disaster Preparedness Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health :  Emergency Preparedness and Pandemic Flu Planning: A Community Forum Genesse Community College August 14, 2006 Emergency Preparedness for Schools: The New Reality Presented by Gregory A. Thomas, MS Director National Center for Disaster Preparedness Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health Who are we?:  Who are we? The National Center for Disaster Preparedness (NCDP) based in Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health, is an internationally recognized resource for disaster and terrorism readiness. The Program for School Preparedness and Planning (PSPP) Conduct assessments and research of the current state of school emergency preparedness and provide guidance for improvements Facilitate a better understanding of the roles of government partners Work closely with state and federal government agencies including the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the U.S. Department of Education (USDOE), the Centers for Disease Control A continuum of concern:  A continuum of concern Other events like natural disasters, e.g. hurricanes; tornadoes; earthquakes; public health emergencies Oklahoma City Bombing 1995 Washington DC Sniper Attacks 2002 September 11 attacks 2001 Rash of targeted school shootings 1990’s Terrorist attack on school in Belsan, Russia 2004 The New Reality:  The New Reality How can schools better prepare themselves for this new set of challenges without “going over the top” ? New standards …….No Child Left Behind…… What does preparedness mean? What are the benchmarks? How do you know when you got there? Are we there yet?:  Are we there yet? Prevention & Mitigation:  Prevention & Mitigation Where school officials would conduct an assessment to identify potential hazards and develop procedures designed to prevent or mitigate the damage that these hazards might cause. Prevention :  Prevention Review traffic patterns and landscaping; (CPTED) Use security equipment such as cameras; access control systems; metal detectors Conduct searches of isolated areas on campus Review crime/incident data; develop student codes of conduct Threat assessment in schools:  Threat assessment in schools In May 2002, the US Department of Education and the US Secret Service released the findings of their multi-year study on threat assessment and its relationship to the prevention of targeted school violence. http://www.ed.gov/admins/lead/safety/preventingattacksreport.doc:  http://www.ed.gov/admins/lead/safety/preventingattacksreport.doc Mitigation:  Mitigation Assess site selections for schools, annexes and athletic venues Use automatic external defibrillators (AEDs) Properly secure bookshelves and lighting fixtures Case study : Train Collision in North Korea – April 22, 2004:  Case study : Train Collision in North Korea – April 22, 2004 Two fuel trains collided about 1 p.m., at a North Korean railroad station 12 miles from China igniting a deafening explosion that rained debris for more than 10 miles around. One train was carrying oil, and the second had liquefied petroleum gas. One television channel said as many as 3,000 people might have been killed or injured. The blast leveled the train station, a school and apartments within a 500-yard radius. Two schools took the brunt of the blast, one of those is no longer even recognizable as a building and had closed for lunch at midday. Most of the 1,000 pupils and their teachers had already left the building. Death toll of children in the schools = 76 Source:© Thomas Crosbie Media, Saturday, April 24, 2004. Case Study: Train Collision in North Korea- April 22, 2004 Residents of Ryongchon township clean up at a primary school following Thursday's huge train blast. Source: REUTERS :  Case Study: Train Collision in North Korea- April 22, 2004 Residents of Ryongchon township clean up at a primary school following Thursday's huge train blast. Source: REUTERS January 29, 2003 Six People Killed, 37 Injured In Explosion At Kinston, NC Pharmaceutical Plant :  January 29, 2003 Six People Killed, 37 Injured In Explosion At Kinston, NC Pharmaceutical Plant Officials say debris was blown miles away from the plant, causing small fires in nearby wooded areas.:  Officials say debris was blown miles away from the plant, causing small fires in nearby wooded areas. Students from nearby Parrott Academy Private School were evacuated as a precaution. Windows in as many 10 classrooms were blown out from the impact. One student who was cut by flying glass received stitches.:  Students from nearby Parrott Academy Private School were evacuated as a precaution. Windows in as many 10 classrooms were blown out from the impact. One student who was cut by flying glass received stitches. January 6, 2005 Train Crash in Graniteville, S.C., :  January 6, 2005 Train Crash in Graniteville, S.C., Preparedness:  Preparedness Where school officials develop plans and protocols to prepare for the possibility that the hazards previously identified in the prevention/mitigation phase will in fact occur. Preparedness:  Preparedness Develop safety plans; conduct orientation seminars with students, parents and staff; establish crisis teams Conduct single agency fire drills and shelter in place drills Conduct tabletop exercises and community wide full scale exercises. Case Study : School Fire in India – July 16, 2004:  Case Study : School Fire in India – July 16, 2004 At least 88 children between the ages of six and 13 years old died and many more were seriously burned when a fire engulfed a three-story private middle school in southern India at around 11 a.m. local time. Many of the victims were trapped in a staircase and could not escape because a door leading outside was locked. Others were crushed as crowds of children rushed towards the exits. A senior fire officer said teachers were not among the dead because they abandoned the children and ran from the burning school. "As soon as the fire started, the teachers had escaped, leaving the children behind," the official told AP, speaking on condition of anonymity. The principal, his wife and daughter (who helped run the school) and two kitchen workers were arrested and charged with criminal negligence. SOURCE: Associated Press Voices: School Fire in India July 16, 2004 :  Voices: School Fire in India July 16, 2004 Eight-year-old Suzy Mary was learning all about ships when panic suddenly erupted in her classroom in Tami Nadu. - “Children came running up shouting 'There is a fire, there is a fire, run away, run away," she told Reuters Maria Anjali was a teacher in the crowded and makeshift first floor classrooms. She said she did everything she could, but some of her colleagues let her down. - “Nobody from downstairs told us about the fire," she told reporters. “ If the kitchen people had warned us it would have been easier to save everyone," "The teachers from the lower floor ran away without telling us." Source: REUTERS The damaged remains of a school classroom in the town of Kumbakonam, about 215 miles southwest :  The damaged remains of a school classroom in the town of Kumbakonam, about 215 miles southwest Lord Krishna Private Middle School after the fire Source: Getty Images Photo, July 16, 2004 Case Study: School Fire in India July 16, 2004 Response :  Response Where school officials work closely with their colleagues in law enforcement, emergency management and the health fields to design response protocols that will be used when an emergency or disaster strikes in or around a school. Response :  Response Develop memorandums of understanding (MOU’s); mutual aid agreements Activate school crisis teams Become familiar with the incident command system (ICS); National Incident Management System (NIMS) Recovery :  Recovery Where school officials work closely with community and government stakeholders to help the affected school (s) recover and return to a sense of normalcy as quickly as possible Recovery :  Recovery Develop community-based crisis intervention teams Develop strong ties with local community based organizations and media outlets Work closely with emergency management, elected and senior government officials to provide accelerated services Geographic Logistics:  Geographic Logistics Satellite Image Map Manhattan, New York Ground Zero Schools P.S. 150 Stuyvesant H.S. P.S.- I.S. 89 P.S 234 Leadership & Public Service H.S. Economics and Finance H.S. World Trade Centers Ground Zero Border Gregory A. Thomas, MS Director The Program for School Preparedness and Planning National Center for Disaster Preparedness View from HS of Leadership and Public Service:  View from HS of Leadership and Public Service So many decisions….so little time:  So many decisions….so little time For the principals of the schools that were located blocks from the former World Trade Center site: - should we shelter the students and staff inside the schools or should we evacuate the schools? - should we release students to non-family members? If so, how do we communicate the process of student release to parents? For the senior officials at the central Board of Education: - should we immediately close all of the schools around the city and release the children so that families can be reunited during this difficult time? - what do we do with the students and staff that attend schools in the affected area? Where will they attend school? How do we provide citywide mental health support for the students and staff? Response and Recovery Actions Taken in the Aftermath of the Disaster :  Response and Recovery Actions Taken in the Aftermath of the Disaster September 11, 2001 ……the fourth day of school.... - The school day was extended for all schools and all schools were ordered to remain open until every child was picked up either by a parent or an authorized caretaker. All after-school programs were cancelled. September 12, 2001 - All NYC schools were closed. September 13, 2001 - All NYC schools are reopened. Eight schools in the city had to be temporarily re-assigned to other school sites either in Manhattan or downtown Brooklyn due to their proximity to the World Trade Center site. September 14, 2001 - Central Board of Education issues guidelines citywide to schools entitled In the Aftermath of New York Trauma UNCOMMON SENSE, UNCOMMON COURAGE: How the New York City School System, Its Teachers, How the New York City School System, Its Teachers, Leadership, and Students Responded to the Terror of September 11 A landmark research study that details the steps that officials from the NYC Department of Education took on September 11, 2001 to safely evacuate 9000 students and staff from eight schools near the World Trade Center and also ensure that all 1.1 million school children, in every part of the city got home safely to be reunited with family and loved ones. :  UNCOMMON SENSE, UNCOMMON COURAGE: How the New York City School System, Its Teachers, How the New York City School System, Its Teachers, Leadership, and Students Responded to the Terror of September 11 A landmark research study that details the steps that officials from the NYC Department of Education took on September 11, 2001 to safely evacuate 9000 students and staff from eight schools near the World Trade Center and also ensure that all 1.1 million school children, in every part of the city got home safely to be reunited with family and loved ones. UNCOMMON SENSE, UNCOMMON COURAGE: Slide31:  No one is ready for something like this. We didn’t overreact. We were as clear as possible. We pulled together, got the information out, and kept kids safe. I am very proud of our people.” -former Chancellor Harold O. Levy, NYCBOE www.ncdp.mailman.columbia.edu Click on “resources” Uncommon Sense, Uncommon Courage Dr. Nancy (Anne) Degnan and Gregory A. Thomas Areas of Focus:  Areas of Focus Decision Making Transportation Facilities Food Services Communication Mental Health Curriculum Fiscal Student Safety Looking Back: 24 Months Later Source Dr. Nancy Degnan Summary:  Summary Performance in the heat of battle is the most compelling story Evacuations were carried out with self-reliance and courage in the face of incomplete information and unknown consequences It is inevitable that communications will fail-there must be an expectation of intelligent response on the ground by people who have been trained in what is expected of them. The key to future planning is the continued ultimate reliance on dedicated professionals. WARNING – WARNING - WARNING:  WARNING – WARNING - WARNING BE PREPARED FOR A FORTHCOMING SHAMELESS SELF- PROMOTION OF MY RECENTLY RELEASED BOOK FROM RANDOM HOUSE Slide35:  Freedom From Fear offers: a look at the history of terrorism and the current global situation an explanation of the Patriot Act ways to put your personal risks into perspective how to set up an emergency plan, including contact lists, emergency kits, and more—for any manmade or natural disaster emergency preparedness tips for the workplace and travel a checklist of safety-related questions to ask your child’s school how to talk to your child about terrorism and violence how to manage your stress level as a means of preparedness RANDOM HOUSE PUBLISHING DECEMBER 2005 Thank you :  Thank you Gregory A. Thomas, MS Director, The Program for School Preparedness and Planning National Center for Disaster Preparedness Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health Address 722 West 168th Street, Suite 1040 New York, NY 10032 Telephone 212-305-6722 E-Mail gat2101@columbia.edu Fax 212-342-5160 Web address: http://www.ncdp.mailman.columbia.edu

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