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Emergency Management: Status of School Districts' Planning and Preparedness

Over the past few years, there has been a great deal of unease about how well schools might be prepared for any number of emergency situations. Recently, the General Accounting Office (GAO) released this paper on the status of school districts' planning and preparedness. The 25-page document was released in May 2007, and while the report features some positive findings, all of the news is not good in this particular area. The findings were based on interviews with federal officials and a number of surveys with state agencies that administer school emergency management grants and public school districts. Within the report, readers will learn that fewer than half of the districts with emergency plans involve community partners. Additionally, 62 percent of districts surveyed noted that there were significant challenges that stemmed from a lack of equipment and training for staff. The report is certainly a timely one, and one that will be of great interest to persons working in this area.
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