The first priority of educators nationwide is to provide a healthy and safe school environment for all students and staff. ACSA has taken a proactive role in school safety with the creation of the Fatal School Violence Toolkit.
“We believe there is a need to have serious discussions about school safety,” said ACSA President Holly Edds. “With regard to school violence and threats, we are facing new challenges every day, and we’ve built this toolkit to include resources designed to save lives.”
The toolkit has three sections: before an incident; during an incident; and after an incident. ACSA members have contributed content to the toolkit, which includes resources on lockdown drills, facility assessments, crisis management, and samples of post-incident communications. The toolkit also includes links to content from student advocates, federal agencies and thought leaders in other parts of the United States.
“This is for members, by members,” Edds said. “By leveraging the work and experiences of our members, we’re creating an incredible opportunity to learn from each other.”
The toolkit is the product of ACSA’s Fatal School Violence Task Force, which is made up of more than 20 volunteers including ACSA members and staff, district law enforcement officers, and crisis management experts. Their goal has been to go beyond discussion and build a strategic plan to create a safer and healthier learning environment.
“After the Florida school shooting in February, we felt a responsibility to do more when it comes to student and campus safety,” said ACSA Executive Director Wes Smith. “But to assemble this toolkit, our task force had to look beyond a violent incident and look into how mental health, bullying and counseling services all play a role in student and campus safety.”
To review the resources on the Fatal School Violence Toolkit, visit www.acsa.org/schoolviolencetoolkit.