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Posted: December 18, 2012 7:30 p.m.

Emergency Action Plan

Once again, we see the necessity of school systems in even the quietest locations having a plan in place to deal with what happened in Newtown, Conn. These tragedies are happening more and more and both school systems and businesses must have an Emergency Action Plan in place, practiced and ready in case the unthinkable happens.

Here in Newton County, it is imperative that our school system implement an EAP down to the classroom level. Every teacher, staff member, administrator and student must know exactly what to do in various scenarios. Every public safety agency in the county must be actively involved along with medical facilities. It must also include provisions to call on outside agencies at a moments notice.

The plan must be practiced like a fire drill, over and over periodically to ensure it will work if ever called on. I can recall as a young student the merry attitude that accompanied a fire drill and how it meant getting out of school for a few minutes. In 2012, this is no joke and deadly serious. Any EAP must be rehearsed to the point that it becomes second nature to all involved.

A good plan should include many provisions. I would think it should include dead bolt locks on classroom and administrative doors, exit routes to include windows on ground floors, hiding places, whatever the alarm method would be, getting the PA system turned on as happened in Newtown and any other aspect experts can think of.

It's time to act. There will be costs associated with the Emergency Action Plan but imagine the costs the people of Newtown are paying now. We live in an age where even the most unimaginable evil is no longer unimaginable. If it can happen in Newtown, it can happen in Newton.

 

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