Ridgefield School District introduces standard response protocol

This information was provided by the Ridgefield School District

 

RIDGEFIELD — In an effort to enhance student and staff safety at all campuses, the Ridgefield School District has partnered with the “I Love U Guys” Foundation to adopt the Standard Response Protocol (SRP).

 

The SRP allows for a shared lexicon by all schools, staff, students and parents. Unlike past practice, SRP allows the district to prepare for a wide variety of emergencies.

 

Work related to this effort began last year when the school district closely analyzed emergency responses and actions related to various events. In January 2015, the district organized a Rapid Response Active Threat tabletop exercise in partnership with Clark Regional Emergency Services Agency (CRESA), the Ridgefield Police Department, Clark County Fire & Rescue, the La Center Police Department and Phoenix Security. Considerable time was then dedicated to locating and reviewing various tools to streamline and unify the district’s response to emergencies. This work led the Ridgefield School District to the “I Love You Guys” Foundation and their vast array of resources.

 

“Our number one priority is student and staff safety,” said Dr. Nathan McCann, Ridgefield’s superintendent, in a news release from the district. “Adopting the Standard Response Protocol enables us to use a shared language that our law enforcement and other first responders are familiar with. Chris Griffith, our assistant superintendent, has done an excellent job leading this effort. We have strategically engaged with our local first responders, amassed valuable information, and enhanced relationships that make it easier to keep our campuses safe.”

 

Griffith led a three-member team that participated in a national school safety symposium in Columbine, Colo., in July. The team brought the information back to the district and led training for all administrators in August. All teachers were trained in early September, and all Ridgefield students will be receiving training in the following week.

 

“The training in Columbine reinforced just how important school safety is,” Griffith said. “I am excited to see that the Ridgefield School District has adopted universal language and procedures that can aid students and staff should emergencies present themselves. Working closely with our local first responders has been a wonderful experience. They care so much about the safety and security of our kids. I am so proud of the effort put forth by everyone involved.”

 

At the core of the SRP are four actions. Each action has specific language that must be used followed by directives that clearly tell staff and students how to respond.

 

The four actions are:

 

  • Lockout. This action is followed by the directive: “Secure the perimeter” and is used to safeguard students and staff within the building.
  • Lockdown. This action is followed by: “Locks, lights, out of sight” and is used to secure individual rooms and keep students quiet and in place.
  • Evacuate. This action is always followed by a location, and is used to move students and staff from one location to a different location in or out of the building.
  • Shelter. This action is always followed by a type and a method and is the protocol for group and self-protection.

 

By using the standardized language of the SRP, the district believes that all participants will clearly understand the action and response expected of them. A district-wide adoption will allow parents to reinforce these actions with their students regardless of what school they attend. SRP provides our emergency response partners (police, fire, medical) with a clearer picture of specific emergencies unfolding at area schools.

 

Anyone interested in learning more about the Standard Response Protocol can visit the Foundation’s website at http://iloveuguys.org/srp.html.

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About The Author

Joanna Nicole Yorke is a 2010 graduate of the Edward R. Murrow School of Communication at Washington State University in Pullman. She has a bachelor's degree in journalism with a minor in political science. Yorke is a Clark County native, growing up on her family's 12-acre farm in La Center where her family still resides today. She was previously a reporter at The Reflector Newspaper, covering the city of Battle Ground, the Battle Ground School District and a variety of other areas and topics.

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