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Governance and Policy ResourcesResearch, guidance and services for effective school board governance

The governing board is elected to serve as steward of the community's schools and thus plays a critical role in providing safe environments for students and staff. The following resources can assist school boards – immediately and over the long term – as they establish policies, practices, and relationships that enhance school security and create positive school climates where all students can learn, grow, and thrive. 

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What actions can boards or county offices take to improve school safety?
Where can I find sample board policies and admin regulation?

Communicating with the public during a crisis
Addressing Campus Security

CSBA resources

Agencies and other resources

What actions can boards or county offices take to improve school safety?

Where can I find sample board policies and administrative regulation?

See the list of school safety related policies here. Access the full sample board policies by logging in to Gamut Online.

Communicating with the public during a crisis

Share your concern for student, staff, and community well being in the wake of a crisis, and communicate immediate and long-term strategies for addressing, mitigating and or resolving the crisis. CSBA statements about incidents at San Bernardino Elementary.

5 Communication Strategies to Prepare for Challenging Times

California Virtual Training Academy+: Crisis and Emergency Risk Communication Training

School Safety Resources

University of Colorado
Safe Communities, Safe Schools Planning Guide

National Association of School Psychologists
Best Practice Considerations for Schools in Active Shooter and Other Armed Assailant Drills 

National Association of Elementary School Principals
School Safety Resources

International Association of Chiefs of Police & Bureau of Justice Assistance/U.S. DOJ
Guide for Preventing and Responding to School Violence

Safer Schools Coalition of Kern
Emergency Planning Rubric for Schools

A Message From California's Homeland Security Advisor & State Superintendent of Public Instruction

Addressing Campus Security

There are a number of measures that districts can take to improve security at school sites. Get tips on building a comprehensive school safety plan and a sample policy from U.S. Department of Education's 2013 "Guide for Developing High-Quality School Emergency Operations Plans"

CSBA resources

Agencies and other resources

National Center for Education Statistics: Indicators of School Crime and Safety 2021
This report presents data on crime at school from the perspectives of students, teachers, principals, and the general population.

Keenan School Safety Center - Online Training Courses
This site from Keenan & Associates includes online training courses and other valuable resources to help California school districts maintain a safe learning environment. 

School Climate Matters: How to Create Safer and Bully-Free Schools (7/2012)
This CSBA webinar, which may be viewed on demand, focuses on the link between a safe and positive school environment and improved student attendance, engagement and achievement in school.

American Association of School Administrators
The Association of California School Administrator’s national partner provides resources to education leaders in the aftermath of the event, including links to psychology and counseling services.

CDE School Disaster and Emergency Management
Provides school violence preparedness resources, heightened school security procedures during threats and tips for helping children cope after traumatic events.

California Department of Education Crisis Preparedness

Children Exposed to Violence Training and Technical Assistance Center (CEVTTAC)
Through CEVTTAC, AIR supports community violence interventions that focus on individual- and relational/family-level and community- and societal-level strategies.

Education Commission of the States
A variety of resources on schools safety topics and related policies. 
Indicators on school safety for local counties, cities and school districts, by grade level, gender and race/ethnicity including perceptions of school safety, carrying a gun at school, carrying a knife or other weapon at school, parent ratings of child’s safety at school, child’s safety in the neighborhood, and bullying/harassment. 

National Association of School Psychologists
A number of tips and resources for teachers, parents and other adults, including the handout, "A National Tragedy: Helping Children Cope."

Responding to a Mass Casualty Event at a School: General Guidance for the First Stage of Recovery

Responding to School Violence: Tips for Administrators

Helping Youth after Community Trauma: Tips for Educators

Talking to Children About Violence: Tips for Parents and Teachers

Best Practice Considerations for Schools in Active Shooter and Other Armed Assailant Drills

National Association of State Boards of Education
Policies to Promote Safety and Prevent Violence is the most recent publication in NASBE’s Fit, Healthy and Ready to Learn series of school health policy guides.

National Education Association
An easy-to-use crisis guide with essential, to-the-point advice for schools and districts.

National Parent Teacher Association
Resources to assist in preventing violence in schools and helping improve the quality of education children receive.

National School Boards Association 

US Department of Education

  • The Readiness and Emergency Management for Schools Technical Assistance Center helps educators and other adults on how to talk to children about the school shootings and how to help them recover after traumatic events.

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