Quick Tips if there is a School Emergency
Below are some quick tips to help families when there is an emergency at a school.
Stay calm and alert:
In the event of a school emergency, please remain calm and know that school staff, District personnel and School and City Police are working to keep your child safe. Please keep your phone close and follow the directions provided. Based on the situation, the District may alert you to visit the District website, pay attention to social media: Facebook and Twitter, or tune in to local media outlets. Please know that the news will not always report accurate information.
Please do not come to the school:
We understand your desire to go to the school and the need to see your child especially in a situation that feels scary. However, arriving at the scene before it is secure can interfere with the emergency response and puts you in danger. Past school emergencies have shown that one of the greatest challenges is how to manage the number of parents and concerned citizens rushing to the scene. By rushing to the school, parents can unintentionally create traffic jams that may block emergency responders from getting to the school or leaving if necessary to transport injured students or staff to emergency medical facilities. Families should not pick up their student unless given the direction to do so from the District.
Please do not call the school:
We ask that families do not call the school. This allows phone lines to stay open for communication with emergency personnel and school officials. It also helps school staff to remain focused on the safety of their students. The school and District will ensure information is shared via our phone messaging system. If a student is injured, the families of those children will be notified directly. The District's Parent Hotline is notified of school-based situations and will be available to answer calls during normal business hours. To contact the Parent Hotline, please call 412-529-HELP (4357).
If you child texts or calls you, please keep them calm:
We know that during a school emergency many of our students will try to call or text their parent or guardian. If this occurs, we ask that you stay calm and reassuring. Encourage your student to follow the directions of school staff. To prevent confusion or added safety risks, ask them to turn off their cell phone and refrain from using social media.
Make sure your contact information and all emergency contact information is accurate and updated:
The District will call families when there is an emergency situation at a school. Please make sure your emergency contact information is always up to date with the staff in the main office at your child's school. In the event of a serious emergency, all emergency contacts will be called. Please make sure the emergency contacts you have listed for your child are up to date and they understand the District's procedures. Also, make sure that they know they are listed as an emergency contact.
Be prepared with photo ID:
In the event of an evacuation, the District will follow a standard reunification plan to ensure all students are safely returned to their families. During a reunification, families and/or individuals listed as an authorized person to pick up your child should do the following:
- Bring valid form of identification (ID).
- Follow signage and parking directions of reunification location.
- Complete the provided reunification form.
- Choose the check-in line that corresponds to your student's grade.
- Provide school personnel at the check-in table with a valid form of photo ID and the completed reunification form.
- Wait patiently as a District staff member retrieves and escorts your student to you.
Please note that only approved adults with valid photo identification will be allowed to pick up students from the evacuation location.