EMERGENCYmanagementPLANNING GUIDEforschools, districts authorities

Copyright 2015, Province of British Columbia.All rights reserved This material is owned by the Government of British Columbia and protected by copyright law. It may not be reproducedor redistributed without the prior written permission of the Province of British Columbia.The Ministry of Education is responsible for producing, revising and updating this Guide. As a matter of process, the Emergency Management Planning Guide for Schools, Districts and Authorities will be reviewed biennially or as needed, and amendments will be made atthat time. Any amendments will be noted within the updated guide using a Revisions Table. The primary point of contact for any questionsand comments, as well as any requests for further resources not included in this Guide, is [email protected] Guide and related templates will be available for download on the Ministry of Education web site. The online version of this publicationis the official version.First edition published in 2015.

TABLE of CONTENTS0405AcknowledgementsIntroduction and Overview07legal framework11goals and guiding principles12roles and responsibilities15British Columbia Emergency Response Management System16 incident command system20Emergency Management Cycle2124mitigation and preventionplanning and preparedness25Developing a School Emergency Management Plan (SEMP)31Persons with Special Needs32Off Site Activities32Non-District Groups333741444546response35Five All-Hazard Emergency Responsesrecovery37Five Aspects of RecoveryDistrict Emergency Management41district planning process42district emergency operations centreConclusionResourcesTemplates

ACKNOWLEDGMENTSMany individuals and organizations contributed to the development of this first edition of the Emergency ManagementPlanning Guide for School, Districts and Authorities. This guide will be an invaluable resource to all British Columbia schools.The Ministry of Education would like to thank the following organizations and individuals for their invaluable advice and feedback.If we have missed someone, we sincerely apologize and ask that you contact [email protected] to haveyour organization or name added to the next edition.BC Association of School Business Officials BC Confederation of Parent Advisory Councils BC Principals’ and Vice-Principals’ Association BC School Superintendents Association BC School Trustees Association BC Teachers’ Federation Canadian Union of Public Employees BC Emergency Management BC, Ministry of Justice Federation of Independent School Associations First Nations Education Steering Committee First Nations’ Emergency Services Society ofBritish Columbia 04 Safer Schools TogetherSchool District 10 (Arrow Lakes)School District 23 (Central Okanagan)School District 36 (Surrey)School District 44 (North Vancouver)School District 45 (West Vancouver)School District 71 (Comox Valley)School District 73 (Kamloops/Thompson)Schools Protection Program, Ministry of FinanceWorkSafeBCAnnette Glover, Former School Trustee, SD 73 (Kamloops/Thompson)Bernadette Woit , Consultant, School Emergency Planning and PreparednessJeff Kaye, Director of Public Safety, Emergency Manager, and ConsultantJuleen McElgunn, Executive Director, BC School Superintendents AssociationPaul Berry, District Principal of Health and Safety, SD 71 (Comox Valley)Sherry Elwood, Superintendent, SD 71 (Comox Valley)Theresa Campbell, President, Safer Schools Togetherbritish columbia ministry of education emergency management planning guide for schools, districts authorities

INTRODUCTION AND OVERVIEWEmergencies are unpredictable. We usually have little warning that an event or series of events may cause a massive disruption inour lives and our communities. As one of the major areas in which people gather, schools are places where emergency preparedness is critically important to the well-being of students and employees and to the confidence that parents feel in entrusting theirchildren to the care of educators in BC schools.This Emergency Management Planning Guide is intended to provide support to public, independent and First Nations schoolsin upholding their responsibilities during an emergency. While some of the terms are used in the public system, such as boardof education or school district, the intent of the guide is that public, independent and First Nations schools can make use ofthe information as it fits their structures and frameworks. The guide outlines a standardized provincial process for planning for,responding to and recovering from all types of emergencies.Emergency: An event or circumstance that is caused by accident, fire, explosion, technical failure, human action or force ofnature, that requires prompt coordination of action or special regulation of persons or property to protect the health, safety orwelfare and/of a person or to limit damage to property.Adapted from the BC Emergency Program Act.Disaster: An event, generally considered to have an even greater impact than an emergency, caused by an accident, fire, explosion or technical failure, or by the forces of nature, and has resulted in serious harm to the health, safety and/or welfare of people,or in widespread damage to property.Adapted from section 1 of the Introduction to Emergency Management in British Columbia, 2007/BC Emergency Program Act.Critical Incident: Any incident, whether natural or human-caused, that has a negative emotional impact on those affectedresulting in a state of stress or discomfort and feelings of loss of control.Adapted from the Justice Institute of BC Critical Incident Stress Management Program, CSMI 100 .EMERGENCYPLANS ARELIVINGDOCUMENTSNote: The above terms are often used interchangeably.british columbia ministry of education emergency management planning guide for schools, districts authorities05

ALL HAZARDS APPROACHRather than focus on and try to provide detail relating to a large number of different events, this guide takes an all-hazardsapproach.All-Hazard: Any incident or event, natural or human caused, that requires an organized response by a public, private, and/orgovernmental entity in order to protect life, public health and safety, and to minimize any disruption of governmental, social,and economic services.An all-hazards approach focuses on planning that involves a small number of responses that can be used in different types ofemergencies. This guide will discuss five basic all-hazard approaches – drop/cover/hold on, evacuate, lockdown, lockout andshelter in place. Further information is provided later in the guide.School emergencies can be on a small scale, confined to one site, or on a larger scale, potentially impacting an entire school districtor even many districts. A small, localized fire within a school, for example, will require a different response than a chemical leakfrom a train derailment, such as occurred at Lac Mégantic that affected a whole community. This guide will provide all-hazardsprotocols for both schools and districts as they plan for emergencies.Being ready to address different scenarios, in collaboration with first responders and relevant community agencies, takesconsiderable preparation on the part of district staff. While district personnel are not necessarily trained as emergency servicesworkers, they may be called upon to fulfil roles related to first aid, damage assessment, locating students and staff, and careand comfort for students over an extended period of time.06british columbia ministry of education emergency management planning guide for schools, districts authorities

LEGAL FRAMEWORKMINISTRY OF EDUCATIONThe Ministry of Education (Ministry) provides leadership and funding to the K-12 education system through governance,legislation, policy and standards. The Ministry’s role in helping to meet the purpose of the school system involves co-governingthe K-12 education system as partners with boards of education. Specific roles and responsibilities are set out under the SchoolAct, the Independent School Act, the Teachers Act, and accompanying regulations and agreements such as the Tripartite EducationFramework Agreement (TEFA).MINISTRY OF HEALTHThe Ministry of Health supports school districts through section 89 of the School Act that requires regional health boards underthe Health Authorities Act to designate a school medical health officer for each school district. The medical health officer, undersection 90 of the School Act, has the authority to inspect schools, report to boards of education regarding the results of an inspection and make recommendations. When the school medical health officer considers that student safety or health is at risk, he orshe has the authority to require a Board to close the school.BOARDS OF EDUCATIONIn British Columbia, the provincial government and 60 school districts, each with a locally elected board of education, share responsibility for the public education system. The Ministry of Education develops high-level education legislation and policy, whileboards are responsible for the overall operation and management of schools and have substantial autonomy to determine localpolicy. Under the School Act, boards of education may: establish local policy for the effective and efficient operation of schools temporarily close schools if the health and safety of students is endangered install and operate video surveillance, and direct individuals to leave and remain off school property if they cause a disturbance and/or impact the climateand culture of the school.Board of education employees, including superintendents, secretary treasurers, school principals, vice-principals, directors ofinstruction and teachers, have specific responsibilities under the School Regulation for managing schools and caring for students.INDEPENDENT SCHOOLSIndependent schools are each governed by an authority which acts as a board and is responsible for overseeing the operations of theschool including funding, staffing, policies and major decisions of philosophy and vision. In this regard, an authority is akin to a publicboard of education but may have responsibility for only one school.Independent schools are created pursuant to the Independent School Act, which sets out the governance and funding of BC independent schools. The Office of the Inspector of Independent Schools, which is a part of the Ministry, requires that independent schoolscomply with the enactments of British Columbia and the municipality or regional district where the schools are located. These includefire and building codes. The office of the Inspector also requires independent schools to have the following policies in place: emergency drill and response, student safety, and student supervision.british columbia ministry of education emergency management planning guide for schools, districts authorities07

FIRST NATIONS SCHOOLSFirst Nations schools are administered by their respective First Nation bands, funded by the federal government, and locatedon reserve lands. They operate under the Indian Act and the majority are not subject to any provincial oversight. A subset ofFirst Nations schools has applied to the Ministry and become BC-certified independent schools, making them subject to theIndependent School Act. A third but very small group has contracted with local school districts to run their schools so theSchool Act applies.Regardless of these differences, First Nations schools in BC are important partners in the emergency management and responseprocess. The Ministry and First Nations schools, along with the federal government, have formalized a collaborative workingrelationship as a result of partnerships with the First Nations Education Steering Committee (FNESC) and the First Nations SchoolsAssociation (FNSA). The TEFA commits government to “sharing expertise, learning resources, and bulk purchasing opportunities.”Further information regarding emergency protocols on-reserve can be accessed through the First Nations Education SteeringCommittee or the First Nations Schools Association.Best Practice: In districts with independent or First Nations schools that have little or no external support, and with regard tothe provisions and goals of TEFA, districts could reach out to the principals of these schools with the goal of including them indiscussions related to school and/or district planning.DUTY OF CAREDuty of Care: A well-established legal principle that educators are expected to use the same standard of care towards theirstudents – both within the school and on school-sponsored field trips – as a prudent or careful parent would in the samecircumstances.Uzelac, J. and Krzus, S. Field Trips and the Duty of Care, TC Magazine, Fall 2007In the event of an emergency, boards of education and educators – teachers, principals, and superintendents - must ensure thatstudents are cared for until such time as they can be safely reunited with their parents. As employers, boards of education arealso responsible, pursuant to the Workers Compensation Act and Occupational Health and Safety Regulation, for the safety ofemployees.The Workers Compensation Act, s. 115 (1) articulates that every employer must:(a) ensure the health and safety of(i)all workers working for that employer, and(ii)any other workers present at a workplace at which that employer’s work is being carried out, and(b) comply with this part, the regulations and any applicable orders.08british columbia ministry of education emergency management planning guide for schools, districts authorities

Specific duties of teachers are articulated in s. 4 of the School Regulation. These include: providing such assistance as the board or principal considers necessary for the supervision of students on schoolpremises and at school functions, whenever and wherever held, and ensuring that students understand and comply with the code of conduct governing their behaviour and with therules [and] policies governing the operation of the school.The principal is responsible, pursuant to s. 5.7 of the School Regulation, for the general conduct of students, both on school premises and during activities that are off school premises andthat are organized or sponsored by the school and shall, in accordance with the policies of the board, exerciseparamount authority within the school in matters concerning the discipline of students.Specific duties of superintendents, pursuant to s. 22 of the School Act, include: the general supervision and direction over the educational staff employed by the board of that school district, and the responsibility for the general organization, administration, supervision and evaluation of the operation ofschools in the school district.Canadian courts have also established a body of common law that speaks to responsibilities of school personnel. The SupremeCourt of Canada, in Myers v Pell County Board of Education, (1981), articulated that “The standard of care to be exercised byschool authorities in providing for the supervision and protection of students for whom they are responsible[is] that of a careful or prudent parent.” Many court decisions over the intervening years across Canada have upheld thisprinciple.Under the auspices of the British Columbia Teachers’ Council, the Standards for the Education, Competence and Professional Conductof Educators in British Columbia (Standards) describe the important role that educators play in caring for their students. The firstStandard articulates that “educators value and care for all students and act in their best interests,” and it further explains that this care must include the emotional and physical safety of students.The statutory requirements, common law and Standards provide strong direction for educators with respect to the level of supervision and support required for the various types and severities of emergencies that are considered in this guide.DEVELOP ACULTURE OFEMERGENCYPREPAREDNESSIN SCHOOLS.british columbia ministry of education emergency management planning guide for schools, districts authorities09

SAFETY TRUMPS PRIVACYIn a joint news release in May 2008, the Privacy Commissioner of British Columbia and the Information and Privacy Commissionerof Ontario clarified an important principle for school staff. They wrote:If there are compelling circumstances affecting health or safety, or if an individual is ill, BC’s privacy lawsallow disclosure to next of kin and others, including school officials and health care providers. Individualcases can be fuzzy, but if someone uses common sense and in good faith discloses information, my office isnot going to come down on them. Privacy is important, but preserving life is more important.Both Commissioners reiterated that such disclosure should not be considered routine but rather a necessary step to protectstudents in extraordinary circumstances.The case that triggered the Ontario and BC Privacy Commissioners to issue their news release involved a Carlton Universitystudent, Nadia Kajouji, who committed suicide. University officials knew of her situation, but did not report it to her parentsor others, citing privacy concerns.The Supreme Court of Canada also ruled on the issue of the constitutionality of search and seizure in schools. In R v. M (M.R.) 1998,the court found that principals and school authorities, providing they were not acting as agents of the police, in other words, atthe direction of the police, would be held to a different standard than exists in the criminal system. The court wrote:Teachers and principals are placed in a position of trust that carries the onerous responsibilities of teachingand of caring for the children’s safety and well-being. In order to teach, school officials must provide anatmosphere that encourages learning. The possession of illegal drugs and dangerous weapons at schoolchallenges the ability of school officials to fulfil their responsibility. Current conditions require that teachersand school administrators be provided with the flexibility needed to deal with discipline problems in schoolsand to be able to act quickly and effectively. One of the ways in which school authorities may be required toreact reasonably is by conducting searches of students and seizing prohibited items. Where the criminal lawis involved, evidence found by a teacher or principal should not be excluded because the search would havebeen unreasonable if conducted by police.The permissible extent of the search will vary with the gravity of the infraction that is suspected. Thereasonableness of a search by teachers or principals in response to information received must be reviewed andconsidered in the context of the circumstances presented including their responsibility to students’ safety.Best Practice: As with all legal matters, school districts should seek legal advice regarding interpretations of law andcourt decisions.10british columbia ministry of education emergency management planning guide for schools, districts authorities

GOALS AND GUIDING PRINCIPLESThe British Columbia Emergency Response Management System (BCERMS) has developed operational goals for emergencyresponse that: provides for the safety and health of all responders, saves lives, reduces suffering, protects public health, protects government infrastructure, protects property, protects the environment, and reduces economic and social losses.These goals of emergency management can be reframed to reflect how schools, districts, and authorities are to respond. For thepurpose of schools and the students and staff who work in them, these goals are to:keep students and staff safe in the event of an emergency, make sure personnel have clear and consistent standards and procedures to follow in the event of anemergency, clearly describe the roles and responsibilities of personnel in our school system during an emergency, ensure that there are communications and protocols aligned to your community, and minimize disruption and ensure the continuity of education for all children.The following guiding principles are adapted from An Emergency Management Framework for Canada, 2nd edition, 2011,which establishes a common approach for the various federal, provincial and territorial emergency management initiatives.Emergency management must e,coherent,risk-based,resilient and flexible,transparent,continuously improving, andethical.british columbia ministry of education emergency management planning guide for schools, districts authorities11

ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIESIn preparing for, responding to and recovering from an emergency, it is critical that the parties involved are aware of their particular areas of authority and responsibility, whether in a legal, professional or employment context. The following parties all play apart in ensuring the safety of children in our schools.SUPERINTENDENTSIn the public school system superintendents act on behalf of boards of education to ensure that emergency management planningand implementation take place at the district and school levels. This includes the implementation of policy and standards; overseeing the development, maintenance and review of district and school plans; and reporting annually to the board of education on thestatus of district emergency preparedness. During a significant emergency event, the superintendent or designate will take control atthe district level.In the independent school system, a head of school, superintendent or school principal may carry out the superintendent’s duties aswell as the duties associated with an individual school. A head of school, for example, may actually be responsible for two or moreschools operating within a single mandate – an elementary school at one location and a secondary school at another. A superintendent in the Catholic school system may be responsible for the operations of a large number of schools within one diocese.Best Practice: Superintendents are expected to report emergencies, disasters and critical incidents to the Ministry asquickly as possible.PRINCIPALSThe principal is responsible for the operation and management of the school including knowing what to do in an emergency toprotect their students and staff. First Responders such as fire fighters and police will respond as available but it is incumbent onthe principal to know how to communicate with and work with staff until such time as first responders arrive and the management of the event becomes a shared task.Principals are responsible for the safety of their students in the event of an emergency or disaster. They must ensure a schoolbased plan is in place. Principals are expected to maintain order during an emergency and to ensure that students are able toreturn safely to parents or approved guardians. The principal, or designate, is the person-in-charge during an emergency at theirschool. The principal is also responsible for conducting drills on an annual basis. The Ministry endorses the folllowingbest practices.Six fire drills (BC Fire Code requirement)Three earthquake drills (BC Earthquake Alliance recommendation)Two lockdown drills (RCMP recommendation)Best Practice: Practice drills with local First Responders and include them in debriefing sessions.Best Practice: Incorporate and integrate emergency drills into learning experiences in ways that increase studentunderstanding and capacity across the curriculum.12british columbia ministry of education emergency management planning guide for schools, districts authorities

TEACHERS, SUPPORT STAFF AND STUDENTSAll school personnel, including principals, teachers, education assistants, clerical, maintenance staff and others, as well as students, are expected to be familiar with the emergency management plan and to understand their particular role(s) in carrying itout. Like the teaching staff, support staff will play a major role in an emergency response. Based on the skills that they bring tothe endeavour, support staff are often best placed to take on the important roles outlined in the school emergency managementplan (SEMP). Students also have a responsibility to understand the emergency routines to the best of their abilities and to followinstructions given by their teachers.PARENTS AND GUARDIANSParents are key partners in their children’s learning and are often very involved in school activities. Parents play an important partin the support of the school’s emergency plan by: participating in the development of the emergency management plan, ensuring that they are aware of how such plans will unfold, providing vital and up-to-date information regarding contact, medical and student release information, participating in drills or exercises related to emergency preparedness, including student release drills, wheninvited to do so by the principal, encouraging their children to take drills seriously, and helping to acquire and organize emergency supplies on an ongoing basis.Best Practice: Conduct emergency drills to reflect realistic situations. For example, a fire drill may involve a situation where,rather than re-entering the school, the assumption would be that the school is uninhabitable and parents will need to pick upstudents, perhaps at an alternate location. The drill, which would be held at the end of the day, could then be extended to involveparticipation by parents so that the student release plan is practised along with the evacuation.VOLUNTEERSIn any school in BC, you are likely to find volunteers working with students and staff in a variety of contexts. In some cases, thesevolunteers may be working with students in the school but they may also be off-site with students. It is incumbent on the schoolprincipal to ensure that volunteers are knowledgeable about emergency procedures and their responsibilities in the event thatthey are the primary person to provide care to their charges. It may be wise to have volunteers formally acknowledge this responsibility and encourage them to attend appropriate drills.Best Practice: All adults in formal or volunteer roles in the school have a responsibility to: r eport any incidents that may threaten the safety and security of students, staff or the school, and call 911 and ensure the appropriate authorities are informed.british columbia ministry of education emergency management planning guide for schools, districts authorities13

EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT BCThe main provincial agency in British Columbia with responsibility during emergencies that broadly impact communities isEmergency Management British Columbia (EMBC). This guide has been written to align with EMBC protocols.EMBC was formed to be the lead coordinating agency in the provincial government for all emergency management activities.EMBC provides executive coordination, strategic planning, and multi-agency facilitation and strives to develop effective workingrelationships in an increasingly complex emergency management environment.EMBC works with local governments, First Nations, federal departments, industry, non-government organizations and volunteersto support the emergency management phases of mitigation/ prevention, planning/preparedness, response and recovery. Additionally, EMBC engages provincial, national and international partners to enhance collective emergency preparedness.EMBC activates a Provincial Regional Emergency Operation Centre (PREOC) and the Provincial Emergency Coordination Centre(PECC) when an emergency or disaster challenges the capacity of local authorities or when extensive cross-ministry collaborationis required to address the impacts of an emergency.For more information about EMBC visit AUTHORITIESThe Local Authority Emergency Management Regulation requires that every local authority in British Columbia - municipalcouncil, board of regional districts or park superintendent in the case of national parks - in British Columbia establish an emergency management organization and develop and maintain a current local emergency plan.In the case of emergencies that require coordinated support to the site level, local authorities will activate emergency operationscentres to manage the consequences of the event. In these events, local authorities will activate emergency plans and directlycontrol the resources under their jurisdiction for the purpose of emergency response and recovery. Local authorities have capabilities, plans and procedures to provide for the safety of their citizens during emergencies. They will execute initial response activitiesusing jurisdictional resources and if required ask for assistance from outside agencies such as Emergency Management BC.Best Practice: School districts are encouraged to involve local authorities and first responders in their emergency managementplanning. School districts, if not invited to do so, should request to be included in emergency planning at the localauthority level.FIRST RESPONDERSFirst responders work at the site level of an event and include police, fire, ambulance, and other municipal and regional agenciesas required. Activities of first responders include securing the perimeter, medical response, firefighting and managing crowds orevacuation zones. First responders are also the group that schools will likely be working with most closely during emergenciesand for that reason it is important to work with them as much as possible during planning and preparedness activities. Otherpublic safety lifeline volunteers such as search and rescue organizations work with schools and school districts.14british columbia ministry of education emergency management planning guide for schools, districts authorities

BRITISH COLUMBIA EMERGENCYRESPONSE MANAGEMENT SYSTEMBritish Columbia Emergency Response Management System (BCERMS) is a comp

School District 23 (Central Okanagan) School District 36 (Surrey) School District 44 (North Vancouver) School District 45 (West Vancouver) School District 71 (Comox Valley) School District 73 (Kamloops/Thompson) Schools Protection