Special to The Mountain Advocate
Students and staff in the Knox County Public Schools are taking steps to ensure that their school facilities are a safe learning environment for all.
During the week of September 14-18, the school district will observe School Safety Week, an annual event focused on practicing drill activities and creating an awareness of the importance of safety procedures both at school and at a home.
“School safety is an on-going and never ending process in the Knox County Schools,” said Kim Merida, facilities coordinator the district.
Each school in the district has set emergency procedures of what actions both students and staff are to take during both common emergencies, such as weather, and during unforeseen circumstances.
“Behind the scenes our emergency committee will be working hard during the week at updating their school plans and preparing safety activities for students,” said Merida. “This is a process that begins in the fall and continues to be revised and revisited throughout the school year.”
The culminating activity of the work of the emergency committee is schools practicing the various procedures that are part of their emergency plan. The procedures that will be tested as a part of safety week include readiness for emergencies such as fires, tornadoes, earthquakes, bomb threats, and potential intruders in the building.
“In addition to encouraging our teachers to led discussions with their students about the seriousness of being prepared for emergencies, we ask that parents continue the conversation at home,” said Merida.
“Not only is it important at school, but students should also know what to do if an emergency happens at their
Knox County Schools’ school safety week is a part of the nationwide observance of preparedness month that coincides with the national Ready.gov campaign. For more information about preparing for emergencies at home and fun learning activities for kids, visit www.ready.gov.