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6114 Emergency and Disaster Preparedness


Northfield, New Jersey X Monitored

X Mandated

Policy X Other Reasons


The Superintendent shall direct the development of plans, procedures and mechanisms for responding to emergencies and crises in the schools that threaten human life and property. He/she shall consult with law enforcement agencies, health and social services agencies and emergency management planners in developing these plans and shall ensure that they provide for the protection of the health, safety and welfare of the school population as well as supportive services for staff, students and their families.

Plans and procedures shall include these elements:

  1. Cooperation with local government agencies in developing and carrying out a school/community disaster plan that includes procedures for building lockdowns when necessary;
  2. Mechanisms for the orderly evacuation of buildings in case of fire or other emergencies;
  3. Means to provide as much protection as possible for students at school and on their way to and from school;
  4. Training in individual self-protection and survival techniques for students and staff;
  5. Communicating specific instructions to students and staff so that the school emergency plan may be carried out with the greatest possible speed and safety.

The Superintendent shall develop and provide an inservice training program for school staff to enable them to recognize and appropriately respond to crises, consistent with the district’s plans, procedures and mechanisms for managing crises. The inservice program shall be reviewed and updated annually.

Fire Drills and School Security Drills

Fire drills shall be held at least once each month for all students. The first emergency evacuation drill of each school year shall be conducted within 10 days of the beginning of classes. Emergency evacuation drills shall be conducted at different hours of the day or evening, during the changing of classes, when the school is at assembly, during the recess or gymnastic periods, or during other times to avoid distinction between drills and actual fires. Outdoor assembly areas shall be designated and shall be located a safe distance from the building being evacuated as to avoid interference with the fire department operations. The assembly areas shall be arranged to keep each class separate to provide accountability of all individuals.

Regular courses of instruction in accident prevention and fire prevention shall be given and shall be adapted to the understanding of the several grades and classes in the schools.


There shall also be at least one school security drill per month. This includes any summer months during which the school is open for instructional programs. A school security drill shall be conducted within the first 15 days of the beginning of the school year. A law enforcement officer shall be present at a minimum of one school security drill each school year in order to make recommendations on any improvements or changes to school security drill procedures that the officer may deem advisable.

A “school security drill” means an exercise, other than a fire drill, to practice procedures that respond to an emergency situation including, but not limited to, a bomb threat, non-fire evacuation, lockdown, or active shooter situation and that is similar in duration to a fire drill.

The building principal shall provide emergency responders with a friendly notification at least 48 hours prior to holding a security drill.

All full-time employees shall receive training on school safety and security that includes instruction on school security drills. New staff members shall receive this training within 60 days of the commencement of that staff member’s employment. The annual training provided to employees shall be conducted collaboratively by the district and emergency responders, including law enforcement, fire, and emergency medical services personnel, in order to identify weaknesses in school safety and security policies and procedures and to increase the effectiveness of emergency responders.

Required Drills

  1. The district shall be required to conduct a minimum of two drills per year for each of the following drills:
      1. Active shooter;
      2. Evacuation (non-fire);
      3. Bomb threats;
      4. Lockdowns.

Students are not required to participate in two of the eight mandated drills.


By June 30th of each year the Superintendent shall submit to the executive county superintendent an annual “Statement of Assurance” report on the forms provided by the Department of Education.

Emergency Closings; Delayed Openings

The Superintendent is authorized by the board to close the schools, open them late or dismiss them early in hazardous weather or in other extraordinary circumstances which might endanger the health or safety of students or school employees.

Each year, parents/guardians, students, and staff members shall be informed in advance of how they shall be notified in event of emergency closings. Parents/guardians shall be required to make alternative arrangements for their students in case no one is home to receive a child after an unscheduled early closing.

Adopted: November 27, 2017

NJSBA Review/Update:


Key Words

Emergencies and Disaster Preparedness, Civil Defense, Disasters, Fire Drills, Security Drills, Bomb Threats, Safety and Security Plan

Legal References: N.J.S.A. 18A:6‑2 Instruction in accident and fire prevention

N.J.S.A. 18A:11‑1 General mandatory powers and duties

N.J.S.A. 18A:40‑12 Closing schools during epidemic

N.J.S.A. 18A:41-1 et seq. Fire drills and fire protection

N.J.S.A. 18A:54‑20 Powers of board (county vocational schools)

N.J.S.A. App. A:9-64 et seq. New Jersey Domestic Security Preparedness Act

N.J.A.C. 6A:16-5.1et seq. School Safety and Security

N.J.A.C. 6A:16-6.3 Reporting students or staff members to law enforcement agencies

N.J.A.C. 6A:26-12.2 Policies and procedures for school facility operation

N.J.A.C. 8:57-1.9 Reporting of diseases by health officers


A Uniform State Memorandum of Agreement between Education and Law Enforcement Officials

International Fire Code, New Jersey Edition, 2006; Section 408 Use and Occupancy-Related Requirements (see particularly: Section 408.3.1).

School Safety and Security Plans, Minimum Requirements


Cross References: *1410 Local units

*2210 Administrative leeway in absence of board policy

*3541.33 Transportation safety

*4131/4131.1 Staff development; inservice education/visitations/conferences

*4231/4231.1 Staff development; inservice education/visitations/conferences

5141.6 Crisis intervention

*6111 School calendar

*6112 School day

*Indicates policy is included in the Critical Policy Reference Manual.

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