The Rhode Island School Safety Program works to coordinate emergency planning, develop standardized safety guidelines, and promote preparedness tips and situational awareness for any type of disaster or emergency that might occur in a Rhode Island school. RIEMA works closely with the Rhode Island Department of Education (RIDE), the Rhode Island State Police, as well as other state and local safety officials, to ensure the continued safety and well-being of students.
The Rhode Island Emergency Management Agency (RIEMA), the Rhode Island Department of Education (RIDE) and the Rhode Island State Police (RISP), along with the Rhode Island School Safety Committee, have developed a newly enhanced version of the Rhode Island School Emergency Procedures Toolkit, which is designed to help Rhode Island schools in their efforts to plan for all types of disasters.
The purpose of the toolkit, which has been updated from previous versions to identify hazards and outline school faculty and staff emergency response responsibilities, is to be utilized as a reference document in training exercises in collaboration with responders, as well as during an incident. Since the information is general, each school or district should tailor these procedures to fit its own environment and capabilities. Schools may use this guide as a functional guide to the school’s safety plan in addition to the Rhode Island School Emergency Planning Guide. For the most effective response, it is recommended that school administrators present this guide to staff during training and review procedures at the beginning of each school year.
To download the toolkit, click here.
RIEMA hosted its annual School Safety Conference on October 23, 2014. The theme of this year's conference was "Building Partnerships for a Safe School Community". To view the conference agenda, click here.
President, National School Safety and Security Services
In July of 2013, Governor Chafee signed RIGL §16-21-24 into effect. The law requires RIEMA, in coordination with RIDE to develop a template for school districts to work with local police and fire departments to conduct a school safety assessment and create an emergency plan. School committees are now required on an annual basis to update school safety and emergency plans and procedures. By December 31st of each year, the Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education must present a safety assessment to the General Assembly and the Governor.
RIEMA, in collaboration with RIDE, the Department of Behavioral Healthcare, Developmental Disabilities, and Hospitals, the Rhode Island Department of Public Safety, Rhode Island State Police and the Division of the State Fire Marshal, and many other stakeholders developed the Model School Safety Plan in the wake of school incidents. The purpose of this joint initiative is to enhance preparedness and response procedures for school systems and local communities in the State of Rhode Island.
The plan is a 300-page strategic blueprint which incorporates best practices and state requirements into a guide that school districts can adopt or modify to meet their individual needs. The key documents in the new resource include an emergency planning guide and two FEMA publications regarding developing high-quality emergency operations for K-12 and Higher Educational institutions.
Model School Safety Plan Sections:
FEMA School Safety Resources: