POOL/PACT met with the Mineral County School District (MCSD) Board of Trustees to present an Emergency Operation Plan (EOP) for the district at their latest meeting.

MCSD is one of 15 schools out of 17 districts in the state that must implement an emergency operation plan. It was noticed by POOL/PACT that each year, the plans submitted by not just MCSD but others were not clear or cohesive.

POOL/PACT came forth with training so that the project can be completed.

Bruce Kirby with School Safety Operations provides emergency management, planning and training to school in California, Canada and Nevada.

Kirby discussed the Sandy Hook situation and their implementation of a safety program, which was found to be lacking after the shooting at the Sandy Hook school.

The goal of School Safety Operations is to supply Mineral County School District with emergency management planning and train to that plan.

“There will be practices covering school safety and will deal with not just stuff that makes the news but stuff that you deal with daily like flooding and hurricane speed high winds. Man made and natural disasters, this is an all-inclusive plan that will work and cover anything that happens,” Kirby told the board.

“Without the support of the board and the support of POOL/PACT, this project can’t carry forth,” he said.

“Compliance with federal and state laws. These begin as presidential directives, go to Homeland Security directives, FEMA writes stuff that they edit and modify every 12 to 15 months this drives things down to the state levels. SB205 was just passed at the legislation. There is a lot of reasons to have this plan in place.”

Kirby explained to the board that you couldn’t work off of piece of paper that is located in a filing cabinet in a crisis situation. You must train to the plan.

“Our kids are our most important resource,” Kirby said.

School Safety Operations evaluates everything from the front light to the dark corners of the back property. Kirby explained that they do not come in and tell you how to be safe. They discuss it with the school, as those in the district know their school better than his company does.

Kirby stated that the Mineral County district is unique because of the base. Nothing makes a better target than a busload of children from the base. School Safety Operations puts procedures in place for incidents like this.

A draft plan would be submitted within 60 days after the initial site assessment. Final report would be personally discussed with Walt Hackford, Superintendent then training will begin.

Hackford discussed the first planning processes. “We kept talking about what-if’s and what-if’s. There was just too many. We do not want to lose a child.”

Hackford told the board that Sheriff Randy Adams has committed to having a school resource officer at the campuses for next year. He told the board that with a school resource officer present, it is a deterrent for possible activities to happen.

Currently, Mineral County is the third school district to come on board. Lander and Churchill are in the final stages of working with School Safety Operations and POOL/PACT.

A committee was approved to the board. The decisions of the committee will not be made public to the communities. A motion to approve the POOL/PACT and School Safety Operations Mineral County School District EOP was approved.

“If you [a child] are not safe, you can not learn. Otherwise, kids can not reach their full potential,” Kirby explained to the board.