MISD believes a safe, caring learning environment is critical to daily school success. Likewise, at Miller we take this responsibility seriously everyday. The key to ongoing school safety is planning, preparation, and practice. We take a proactive approach by having our learners and their leaders regularly practice three important drills:
Shelter-in-Place: A shelter-in-place procedure may be implemented when it is safer to keep everyone inside the building rather than expose them to possible harm outside the building. This procedure controls and manages everyone while allowing outsiders to seek shelter with us inside as well. Students are not released to anyone until an “all clear” is given. Tornado warnings, severe storm warnings, wildfires, chemical spills, or other things may trigger a shelter-in-place on our campus.
Evacuation: There are two types of evacuation (on-site and off-site). On-site evacuation involves removing students and staff from the building in a timely manner to a safe location on campus property. A fire drill or campus fire is an example of this evacuation procedure; students and staff remain on or nearby our campus, but not in the building. If we cannot re-enter the building during an on-site evacuation or must leave the campus property, we move to an off-site evacuation where we transport students and staff by school bus to another location (the reunion site for MISD) for safety purposes. The reunion site is the only place where campus personnel will release students to parents after an off-site evacuation has occurred. There are strict procedures in place for releasing students including verification of your personal ID.
Lockdown: A lockdown procedure may be implemented when a situation occurs that may be hazardous to personal health or is life-threatening. It strictly prohibits access into our building or out of our building by controlling the situation in order to increase immediate safety and reduce possible victimization. A lockdown may be called for a variety of reasons including weapons, intruders, police activity in or around our building, contamination, or terrorist threats. The Campus Crisis Response Team do “sweeps” to clear all common areas of the building while securing students safely until an “all-clear” is given. Again, students are not released to anyone during this time.
Can we plan for every scenario? No, but we will do everything humanly and professionally possible to ensure our campus is the safe, nurturing educational setting you expect daily in our growing learning community. Students are our first priority everyday. If you find yourself on our campus during a drill (or the real thing), please know you are expected to participate with us.
Procedures are planned, implemented, and practiced–we practiced two today, in fact! One young friend noted: “Are you trying to scare us to death, Mrs. Van?” No, we’re just planning, preparing, and practicing like we promised!
Note: We followed MISD protocol and stayed in contact today with local authorities and our district staff regarding the chemical fire in Waxahachie. Our students did not go outside to recess today after 11:40 a.m.