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Letter to EPS Learning Community- E-mail Notification of School Security Drills - 2-9-22

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Olga Hugelmeyer
Superintendent of Schools

February 9, 2022

Dear Elizabeth Public Schools Professional Learning Community,

Elizabeth Public Schools recognizes the important role of providing safe and secure schools and works diligently to provide all students the safest and most comfortable learning environment possible.

A new law, P.L. 2021, c.365, has gone into effect that requires school districts to notify students, team members, and parents when a school security drill is conducted during the school day. Students and team members will be notified by their school administration following the security exercise that it was a drill and no danger existed. Parents and guardians will also receive an email notification each time their child’s school performs a security drill, informing them that a security drill has taken place.

In terms of security related events, the district will only use the voice and text features of its automated messaging system (BlackBoard Connect) if there is a true emergency or if an alarm goes off within a school or administrative office that was not planned.

Security drills are required once per month during the school year. Types of security drills include lockdown, shelter-in-place, evacuation, bomb threat, and active shooter. Fire drills, which are considered separate from security drills, are also required once per month. As the new law pertains specifically to security drills, email notifications will only be sent on days when a security drill has been conducted.

The safety of everyone in our school buildings and administrative offices is imperative. We will continue to plan and conduct these drills to proactively prepare our students and team members in the event they have to respond in an actual emergency.

Olga Hugelmeyer