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School Emergency Procedures

Please read the following page for school emergencies:
Hawaii Department of Education Emergencies

The Hawaii State Department of Education is committed to providing a safe environment for students, staff, and visitors. We work closely with national, state, and local safety officials such as Police, Fire, Emergency Medical Services, Emergency Management Agencies and the Department of Health to ensure our schools are well prepared in the event of an emergency. Each school conducts drills throughout the school year to help students and staff prepare for possible emergencies.

How You Can Help
• Ensure that your child’s emergency contact information is accurate and current.
• All DOE schools have emergency plans. Become familiar with your school’s emergency plan and parent/guardian reunification procedures in the event of a school evacuation.

Although your first reaction would be to call or rush to your child’s school, please follow the tips listed below.
• DO NOT call or rush to your child’s school. Phone lines and staff are needed for emergency response efforts.
• DO NOT phone your child. Staff and students are discouraged from using cell phone communication for safety reasons.
• Tune in to local TV/Radio stations for official school news alerts.
• Rely only on official communication from school or public safety officials.
• Listen for official information regarding reunification with your child. Students will be released ONLY to parents/ guardians who are documented as emergency contacts and who present a picture ID such as a driver’s license, military ID or passport.
• Go to the DOE website for emergency updates.

Safety Terms & Procedures
In the event of an emergency at your child’s school, it is important to know these terms:

LOCKDOWN: A lockdown takes place if an internal or external threat is identified at the school. All school doors are locked and students are confined to classrooms. No entry into or exit from the school will be allowed until an “all-clear” announcement is made.

SHELTER IN PLACE: Students take refuge in designated areas to protect them from hazardous materials or severe weather. No entry into or exit from the school will be allowed until an “all-clear” announcement is made.

EVACUATION: Certain emergencies may require students and staff to evacuate school. Evacuations are conducted when it is no longer safe to remain on campus. All schools have evacuation sites and conduct evacuation drills annually. In the event the emergency continues and students are not able to return to campus, parent or guardian re-unification procedures will take place. Please become familiar with your school’s re-unification procedures.

Office of School Facilities and Support Services/Safety, Security, and Emergency Preparedness Branch Department of Education • State of Hawaii • RS 09-1781 • July 2009

Please also see the attached PDF file.