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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 200286 Find in a Library
Title: Taking Crisis Response to the Next Level
Journal: Campus Safety Journal  Volume:11  Issue:5  Dated:May 2003  Pages:19-21
Author(s): Brian Moyer
Date Published: May 2003
Page Count: 3
Type: Program/Project Description
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article explains the mission and responsibilities of the District Response Team (DRT) in addressing security crises in the schools of Pasco County, FL.
Abstract: The DRT is composed of school-district staff, primarily district-level supervisors. Most of these supervisors have school-based experience. The DRT has the mission of responding to schools throughout the district to assist in circumstances such as the following: threats of campus violence or unrest; school-wide incidents of crime or violence; evacuation/transfer of students to an evacuation site; fire/explosion/storm damage and recovery; extended power outages; and any event or condition that threatens the normal operation of the school. In assuming these responsibilities, the DRT frees school staff to focus on the routine operation of the school. Additional benefits of the DRT include increased supervision of students to prevent panic or violence; increased control of campus egress/ingress; increased sense of safety for students, staff, and parents; additional assistance to on-scene police and other emergency workers; increased security when additional law enforcement personnel are not available; and assistance to staff as needed with interviews, notifications, media, etc. Pasco County also has a long-standing Crisis Intervention Team that provides support and grief counseling for schools that must deal with student or faculty deaths or other traumatic events. The DRT cooperates with the Crisis Intervention Team when needed. The DRT, however, is more proactive than the Crisis Intervention Team, as it responds to many situations that never require crisis counseling. Volunteer candidates for the DRT attend a mandatory 3-day training course, which includes both classroom sessions and a practical exercise that consists of a surprise call-out to a school site that is experiencing a mock crisis. To request help from the DRT, a school principal contacts the Director of Student Services. Once the school's need is established, an incident coordinator is appointed to initiate the call-out of team members. Once on scene, the principal briefs the team, and the team leader establishes priorities and assignments based upon the type of incident and the needs of the school. Future plans call for involving DRT members in the many crisis exercises that occur throughout the county to provide additional training and instill more confidence in dealing with the stressful, chaotic scenes they may face.
Main Term(s): Domestic Preparedness
Index Term(s): Campus crime; Campus Security; Crisis intervention; Crisis intervention training; Crisis management; Emergency procedures; Florida; School security; Violence
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