School Safety and Emergency Operations Plans (EOPs) (June 2018 School Leader Update)
Now that the legislative session is over the Department is getting questions on Senate File 2364 which mandated that all Iowa school districts and accredited non-public schools develop a high-quality emergency operations plan by June 30, 2019. Here is the new Legislation: Iowa Code § 280.30 on High-quality school building emergency operations plans. We have good news to share! The Department will be working with the Federal Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Iowa Department of Homeland Security (HSEM) to help schools and school districts begin the emergency operations planning process, if you haven’t already. With some grant money provided by DHS and HSEM and collaboration with our partners at the Area Education Agencies and the Iowa School Safety Alliance, we will be working on the following initiatives:
- Behavioral Threat Assessment Training – Training has already been offered at one AEA for Behavioral Threat Assessment from the U.S. Department of Education and REMS-TA (Readiness Emergency Management for Schools – Technical Assistance). The Department will continue to work to get more training set up at every AEA so that all schools can participate in this beneficial training.
- See Something, Say Something Iowa – Prior to the 2018-2019 school year, all Iowa schools public and nonpublic will receive See Something, Say Something Iowa posters to display within their schools. All Iowa high schools will also receive banners. We will also be pushing out a See Something, Say Something Iowa social media and public service announcement campaign. The goal is to raise awareness on reporting of local terrorist activities including school shootings.
- EOP Planning Workshops - In the fall of 2018, the Department along with DHS will also be offering training at every AEA to get schools started on the emergency operations planning process. This will be just the beginning of the process. We are planning to contract with a school safety contractor to oversee the planning process and assist schools in this process over the next year.
- School Safety Contractor - Hiring a contractor to help schools with the EOP planning process as described above.
We have a lot of great initiatives we are working on in school safety to help schools. We are looking forward to helping you get your plans in place. More guidance will be forthcoming. In the meantime, here are some resources to get you started on Emergency Operations Planning.