Lockdown and Hold & Secure Drills
Lockdown and Hold & Secure Drills Information
Every school in HRSB practices Lockdowns and Hold & Secures as part of our emergency planning/preparedness cycle. Staff and students are familiar with these drills, but we wish to increase your knowledge of our procedures, especially for new families to our school.
What’s the Difference Between Lockdown and Hold & Secure?
During a practice drill, students remain silent with doors locked and lights out in their classroom if it is a Lockdown. For a Hold & Secure, the doors are locked, but otherwise it’s business as usual. We have 2 Lockdown Drills and 1 Hold and Secure drill per year.
Under What Circumstances is a Lockdown Implemented?
It is important to understand that school staff will implement a lockdown and call police if/and when there is any reason to believe that imminent danger to students and staff may exist. At this stage, everyone in the school will move to a secure location, safe from harm. Police will respond to the school and no one will enter or leave, until the situation is resolved.
What Should Parents Do If The School Is Locked Down?
The first instinct of parents/guardians is often to either phone the school directly, contact your child, or to attend directly to the school. You are asked not to do any of these things, but instead to understand and follow the procedures outlined below.
Do Not Come To The School
Experience has shown that roadways need to be kept clear for responding emergency vehicles, and parents and others attempting to drive to the school can slow police and other emergency responders from getting to and securing the area as quickly as possible. Therefore, if you hear that a lockdown is occurring at your child’s school, do not attend to the school.
Instead, you may attend to your schools’ designated Parent location at Saint Mary’s Tower, 920 Tower Rd., Halifax, N.S .to receive information which will be provided by police and school representatives. These locations are selected as being far enough from the school to maximize your safety and that of others.
How Will I Know What’s Going On?
Please be assured that every effort will be made to keep you informed as to what is happening during the event. Experience has shown that incorrect information often circulates during an event when it does not come directly from the police or school board. Please note that, for safety reasons, some situations may require that some information be withheld until the situation is resolved.
In lockdown situations you may also contact the school board by calling 902-464-2000.
Do Not Try To Call Your Child
We also ask that you NOT attempt to phone your child. In a lockdown, everyone must remain quiet, and a ringing cell phone may draw undue attention to the secure location where your child and his/her classmates are.
When/Where Will I Meet My Child?
After the lockdown, you may be asked to go to the school or to wait where you are until your child is brought to your location
Under What Circumstances is Hold & Secure Implemented?
Aside from lockdown procedures, your child’s school may also implement a precautionary “Hold & Secure” if there is an unrelated emergency situation occurring outside the building or in the neighbourhood that could potentially present a danger to the school.
What Should Parents Do If The School Implements Hold & Secure
In this situation all doors to the school are locked and monitored to allow any students from outside entry into the school. Classes will generally continue but no one will be allowed to enter or leave the building until the situation is resolved. We also ask that you do NOT attend to the school unless asked to do so by school board staff.
We encourage you to discuss school safety with your child and to address any concerns they may have and we welcome any questions you have about this or any other issue related to the safety and security of our school.