By Travis Mounts
HAYSVILLE – Chamber of Commerce members learned about USD 261 crisis training at the Chamber’s monthly meeting, held Oct. 17 in the police and court building.
B.J. Knudson, the executive director of maintenance for the Haysville School District, shared a presentation designed for classified staff and substitute teachers. He described the “what-if” crisis training, which is part of the standard response protocol developed by the I Love U Guys Foundation.
The protocal provides uniform language for all schools and buildings.
“It’s an all-hazards approach,” Knudson said, and it can be used for weather situations, school intruders or for situations outside of a school. A recent car chase impacted several
Haysville schools recently, he said, although the interruption was short-lived.
There are five actions available: lockout, lockdown, evacuate, shelter and hold. Fliers are given to students and families at the start of the school year, and they are encouraged to go over them at home. According to a video presented at the meeting, 70 percent of lockdowns are over in five minutes, and 90 percent are over in 10 minutes. Knudson said the lockout and hold actions are the most-used in Haysville.
“Shelter” would most often be used for weather or other natural disasters. Knudson noted that the recent bond issue has provided safe rooms at all Haysville schools. The “hold” action is often used in medical situations. Basically, students are to stay where they are, even if the bell rings to signal a change in classes. That action was just added this school year.
Knudson went on to say that each school has a detailed crisis plan. The standard response protocol is just one piece of those plans. In addition, each building has crisis teams and there is a district-level crisis team.
Editor’s note: This story first appeared in the Oct. 31 print edition of the Haysville Sun-Times. To see stories like this sooner and to get all your community news, please subscribe. Call 316-540-0500 to get the next edition delivered to your home.
This year, the state has lowered the number of crisis drills from 16 down to nine. Knudson noted that schools are statistically still the safest place for children, including their own homes.
There have been nationwide discussions about how drills might cause stress in children. Knudson said the district customizes drills to be age-appropriate for its students. He said Haysville and Wichita city officials and Sedgwick County authorities do a good job of communicating with the district when there are situations taking place or the possibility of a situation that might require action by the schools.
In other business:
• Chamber members are expecting about 1,8000 children to take part in the downtown trunk-or-treat event.
• Two members of Wichita Baseball 2020 were guests at the meeting and are the Chamber’s newest members. The group is bringing a Triple-A professional baseball city to the new stadium that the city of Wichita is building. The team is relocating from New Orleans, and the new name and logo are expected in November.
• The annual Gobble Wobble 5K is coming up soon. Portions of the proceeds will benefit the USD 261 Education Foundation.
• The next Chamber meeting will be Nov. 21. Village Christmas will be held Dec. 7.