[school’s name here] The Bomb Threat Response Plan The Reality of Bombs • Bombings are very rare. In the last three years, there were only 65 incidents where an actual explosive device was placed in a school (excluding colleges). • However, from 1993-1997, juveniles were responsible for 34% of the bombings in the United States. In some states, the percentage is as high as 66%. 87% of the devices that juveniles build function, which is 6% higher than the national average of 81% for all bombs placed on a target. Juveniles have built sophisticated devices, some even using high explosives. • We must investigate and respond to every bomb threat we receive. • To respond properly and consistently, we have created a bomb threat response plan. This presentation will explain our plan. Penalties for False Bomb Threats • Making a false bomb threat is a federal offense punishable under United States Code 18-844e, with a penalty of up to ten years in prison, $250,000 fine, or both. This penalty also applies to juvenile offenders. • [insert state law penalties, if known] District and School Policy • Our district has specific penalties and sanctions if a student or staff member is caught making a false bomb threat. [insert district measures and policies here] • Our school has also adopted additional measures. [insert school measures and policies here] These measures are explained in our student code of conduct. Prevention • To combat bomb threats, we have implemented a twopart prevention initiative: – Improve the physical security of the school – Improve relations between students, faculty, administration, and parents. • It is especially important that we listen to students and make students feel comfortable coming forward with information. As parents, you can help by listening to your kids, talking to them after a bomb threat, and by bringing any information to our attention. Prevention • Here are the specific prevention measures and programs we have taken: – [list specifics of your prevention effort] Training • All our staff members have been trained in our bomb threat response protocol and in evacuation. • In addition, members of our Search Teams, who search our school for suspicious items in the event of a bomb threat, and our Evacuation Units, who oversee the evacuation, have been trained in these roles. Bomb Threat Response Team • Our school has created a Bomb Threat Response Team. This multidisciplinary team has the responsibility of determining and coordinating our response to each bomb threat, as well as interfacing with community emergency services like fire and police. • The members of our BTRT are: – [list team members] • Each BTRT member has a specific responsibility. Our BTRT has created a bomb threat response plan specifically for our school. Site Decision Maker • The head of the BTRT is the Site Decision Maker. Our Site Decision Maker is [insert name]. This person coordinates all activities and makes all final judgment calls. In the event that this person is not available, [insert name] is the alternate. Coordination with Emergency Services • The BTRT has coordinated all its efforts with fire, police, the bomb squad, and other community resources. Each agency’s role has been defined and emergency services have visited our school to plan their response. We are striving for a seamless response to all incidents. Facilities Review • In cooperation with emergency services, we have conducted a review of our facilities and have implemented additional physical security measures where deemed appropriate. [Discuss any new measures that parents should be aware of.] Assessment and Response • Our BTRT and Threat Assessment Team assess the threat and determine an appropriate response. This response may be search in place with evacuation if warranted, evacuation, or other method. The response is tailored to the specifics of the threat and situation. Response • Once the BTRT and Threat Assessment Teams have determined how to proceed, the Search Teams may be assembled to search the school and/or the Evacuation Units may be deployed to oversee evacuation. These teams have been trained and all staff is being trained in evacuation procedures for a bomb threat. Response • If the threatener is known and is a student, the BTRT/TAT may take additional steps, including interviewing the threatener, and his/her teachers, friends, and parents. The Team will then determine appropriate immediate and long-term responses to address the current situation and the student’s long-term well-being. Evacuation Policy • Our school does not evacuate for every bomb threat. [explain why][change if your school does have mandatory evacuation] Communication Methods • If students must be dismissed from school, parents will be notified via [communication method, such as phone tree or local cable]. Student Pick-Up • If students were evacuated prior to dismissal, parents who wish to pick up their students should proceed to [location of parent/family reunification area]. Our Parent Liaison, [name], will be available to address your concerns and coordinate sign-out. • Students will be signed-out on a case-by-case basis. Only authorized persons, as specified on the student’s emergency contact form, will be allowed to pick up students. You must have ID. Special Situations • We have additional steps for situations when a bomb threat involves: – – – – A school bus [explain measures in general] A special event [explain measures in general] A field trip [explain measures in general] Before or after school hours [explain measures in general] – During summer school [explain measures in general] If An Incident Occurs • If, despite our best efforts, an incident occurs, it is important that our professionals and emergency response agencies are able to do their job to care for your children. We need your cooperation: – In the event of evacuation, our students and staff are instructed to turn off their cellular phones and pagers so they do not accidentally trigger a device. Please do not attempt to contact your child using these methods. – Please do not call the school. We need to keep the phone lines clear for emergency services. We will be contacting you with information as per the communication methods we discussed earlier. If An Incident Occurs – Do not come to the school until contacted and instructed to do so. This will allow emergency services time and space to do their job. When you are instructed to do so, please proceed to the Parent/Family Reunification Area at [location]. Our Parent Liaison, [name of Parent Liaison] will be available to answer your questions, update you, and coordinate student sign-out. – Please do not attempt to cross a police line, interfere with emergency services, impede command or rescue operations, or contact your child at their assembly area. We must keep control of the scene at all times and we need your cooperation so we know where everyone is at all times and that they are not in a danger zone. – Do not take your child from the school premises without completing the sign-out procedure. If you do, we will waste valuable time and resources trying to find that student, and may jeopardize other lives for no reason. If An Incident Occurs • Instruct your child not to talk to the media during a crisis. It is important that misinformation and partial information does not get communicated to others. We have a designated media holding area located away from the students and a Media Liaison to release accurate information to the media. It is important that our students be kept in their designated assembly areas and under the supervision of our staff until released to their parents. • Above all, please remain calm. We have a plan and we have trained on it and practiced it. Please let us do our job. We know that we can rely on your cooperation because we have spent this presentation time together explaining the proper procedures. Follow-Up • The BTRT debriefs after every bomb threat response to improve our procedures. Please contact the Principal if you have feedback. • In cooperation with law enforcement, our school investigates every bomb threat and attempts to find out who perpetrated it and take appropriate action. If you hear any rumors or discussions about the threat, please speak to the Principal. • Encourage your children to tell you if they have any knowledge of who made the threat. Please share this information with the Principal. Follow-Up • If your child is having problems or exhibiting threatening behavior, let us help you. Speak to the Principal or your child’s Guidance Counselor. • Our school provides support services for staff and students after a bomb threat. Please see [name of mental health person or counselor] if your child needs assistance. • Our school also properly reports each bomb threat to law enforcement and to the district. Thank You Our goal is to provide a safe, supportive learning environment for our students. This takes effort and cooperation on everyone’s part. Thank you for taking an active role in our school.