BCPS School Safety Overview
Designated Safety Staff
Broward County Public Schools has a Chief Safety and Security Officer who manages all District safety and security efforts through the Division of Safety, Security and Emergency Preparedness.
The District’s Chief Safety and Security Officer is certified by FEMA in the following areas:
- Multihazard Emergency Planning for Schools
- Multihazard Planning for Childcare
- Planning for the Needs of Children in Disasters
- Preparing for Mass Casualty Incidents: Guide for Schools, Higher Education, and Houses of Worship
- Introduction to Incident Command System, ICS-100
- Basic Incident Command System for Initial Response
- Introduction to the National Incident Management System
In addition to the Chief Safety and Security Officer, there are more than 1,200 school focused safety staff including Safe-School Officers, security specialists, and campus monitors.
All schools in the District are required to conduct an annual site assessment which involves school staff, district staff and community partners including local law enforcement.
The results of this annual assessment are integrated into each school’s Safety Plan and inform future infrastructure planning.
Staff and Faculty Training
Broward County Public Schools faculty and staff are required to complete training on emergency policies and procedures annually.
New faculty and staff are provided access to the Emergency Preparedness Manual and are trained on their respective roles in an emergency at the time of hire. Training is reinforced through subsequent trainings and drills conducted throughout the school year.
The District also provides students with comprehensive training and drills on all emergency policies and procedures (such as evacuations or lock-downs) based on the Emergency Preparedness Manual.
Developmentally-appropriate and trauma-informed drills and training are conducted with students throughout the school year.
Exercises and Drills
All Broward County Public Schools conduct regular exercises and drills as outlined in the Emergency Preparedness Manual and new Role Specific Emergency Protocols. To aid in this process every school has a designated SAFE team comprised of faculty and staff who have been specially trained on appropriate procedures to ensure every school follows safety protocol.
Discussion-based table top exercises are also conducted regularly with staff, faculty and community partners, and the results of these exercises are documented and incorporated into school safety plans as necessary.
Additionally, all schools conduct operation-based drills with faculty and staff, and age-appropriate drills with students throughout the school year. These drills cover all sections of the Emergency Operations Plan and are documented accordingly.
Recovery is one of the five critical phases of Emergency Management outlined in the BCPS Emergency Preparedness Manual.
Accordingly, the District has a Crisis Response and Recovery Handbook which addresses the four components of recovery (academic, physical, fiscal, and emotional). This handbook provides general guidelines for crisis response and recovery for different timeframes and can be used in conjunction with individual school safety and security plans.
The handbook is divided into several sections based on the type of crisis. Within each section there is information designed for the administrator, classroom teacher, and counselor/responder.