The safety of students and staff is a top priority within the Olentangy Local Schools, and the district makes every effort to be prepared in case of an emergency. The district believes that creating a conscientious plan that is continuously reviewed and updated, regularly practicing safety procedures and keeping open lines of communication will help prepare staff and students in case of an emergency.
The district worked with representatives from local law enforcement agencies and fire departments to develop a plan that includes emergency contact information and procedures for handling crisis situations like lockdowns, natural disasters, chemical spills, bomb threats, missing students and strangers in the building. Copies of the safety plan are available in every building, and each classroom contains a quick-reference guide to the plan. Building- and district-level safety teams have been established to support staff members in the event of a crisis. The plan is reviewed and updated annually.
Olentangy schools also conduct a number of practice exercises to ensure that staff and students are as prepared as possible in the event of an emergency. Each building runs at least nine fire drills and two tornado drills each school year. The state requires schools to conduct one safety drill each year; Olentangy schools meet this requirement and conduct two additional safety drills each year, which may include practicing lockdowns of various security levels. The dates and times of these drills are recorded and filed with local law enforcement and safety officials.
Olentangy believes that open communication is a key element in maintaining safe learning environments. To that end the district has placed links to the Speak UP! reporting system on each of its building websites. The Speak UP! system allows students, parents and any other concerned parties to file an anonymous report regarding potential safety or bullying issues.
When safety concerns do arise, Olentangy will update parents through one or more of the following communication tools:
- District website
- District mobile app
- District/building emails
- Rapid-calling system
A list of student safeguards is available here.