As the primary point of contact outside the home for most children in the country, our primary education system has seen its mandate expand greatly from a purveyor of basic education.
Today, schools also provide nutrition, psychological and emotional support, and when necessary, a safe haven in times of crisis. Parents, guardians and the community at large depend on schools to keep children safe as incidents such as natural disasters, terrorist attacks, contagions and mass shootings are on the rise.
Over the last decade, schools and school districts have utilized their websites, mobile applications and social media outlets to provide timely information in emergencies. With the proliferation of information sources on and offline, not all of which are reliable, it is difficult for schools to control messaging and provide accurate direction.
This whitepaper focuses on the strategies that school districts — especially those with 40 or fewer schools — can implement to meet this challenge. It outlines the technological and communication steps districts can take to help minimize the impact of community-altering emergencies.