Keeping the school enviroment safe & healthy

Keeping the School Environment Healthy & Safe


NEA ESP members have developed ideas for working with teachers and administrators to create a safe and healthy school environment for students and staff:

Encourage Students to Succeed:

  • Greet everyone with a smile.
  • Give students positive reinforcement.
  • Communicate with “at-risk” students.
  • Mentor a student in reading or writing.
  • Be observant, listen carefully.
  • Make a concerted effort to reach out to students who are shy or troubled. Compliment them and acknowledge them whenever you can.
  • Encourage children to share their problems; find help or counseling, if necessary.
  • Provide a role model – lifestyle, values, attitude, hobbies, interests.
  • Ask students about their grades and if they need help.
  • Eat lunch with a group of students.
  • Set aside time daily to read with a student.

Protect Students & Bus Drivers

  • Inspect the bus for safety and cleanliness before each trip. Check after each trip to make sure no student is left on the bus.
  • Participate in bus safety classes for drivers.
  • Use two-way radios to communicate with other drivers and dispatchers.
  • Perform evacuation drills.
  • Service buses regularly.
  • Assign seats to prevent trouble.
  • Present a safety program to new kindergarten students each school year and make sure older students know the rules up front.
  • Listen to conversations to pick up potential problems.

Keep Buildings and Groups Safe and Secure

  • Check the building before opening and at the end of the workday.
  • Require sign-in sheets and visitors’ badges.
  • Send students on errands in pairs.
  • Keep emergency cards on file for every student. Don’t let a student leave with anyone not listed on his/her emergency card.
  • Send a handbook home with each student explaining safety rules and procedures.
  • Ask neighbors to call the school whenever they observe anything suspicious.
  • Keep shrubs and bushes cut back.

Prepare for Emergencies

  • Practice fire drills every month.
  • Train crisis intervention teams to react to emergencies.
  • Prepare course of action guidelines and evacuation plan for bomb threats, earthquakes, and other school crises.
  • Have a code phrase that means “Get all the students out of the halls and into a room until the ‘all clear’ code is given.”
  • Don’t disregard any threats made by students.

Guard Against Drugs, Weapons

  • Know and enforce school board policies about weapons, drugs, alcohol, fighting, tobacco and inappropriate language and dress.

Protect Workers

  • Keep equipment in repair to avoid accidents.
  • Use safety belts for lifting.
  • If you work with food, wash hands, wear gloves; sanitize tables and food equipment after meals.

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