Lockdown is called when there is a threat or hazard inside the school building. From parental custody disputes to intruders to an active shooter, Lockdown uses classroom security to protect students and staff from threat.
The public address for Lockdown is: “Lockdown! Locks, Lights, Out of Sight!” and is repeated twice each time the public address is performed.
The Lockdown Protocol demands locking individual classroom doors or other access points, moving room occupants out of line of sight of the corridor windows and having room occupants maintain silence.
There is no call to action to lock the building outside access points. Rather, the protocol advises to leave the perimeter as is. The reasoning is simple - sending staff to lock outside doors exposes them to unnecessary risk and inhibits first responder’s entry into the building.
Teachers and student training reinforces the practice on not opening the classroom door, once in Lockdown. Rather, no indication of occupancy should be revealed until first responders open the door.
The classroom teacher is responsible for implementing Lockdown. The teacher should lock all classroom access points and facilitate moving occupants out of sight.
Silent or whispered roll should be taken to determine if attendance has changed since the beginning of class.
Lockdown is typically reported by students or staff to the school operator. The operator then invokes the public address and informs administration. It may also be reported to the school operator by local emergency dispatch.
Teachers and students should be trained to not open the classroom door until a first responder or school administrator unlocks it. Students, staff and teachers should be advised that a Lockdown may persist for several hours and during an incident, silence is essential.
Lockdown drills should be performed a minimum of once per year. If possible one of these drills should be performed with local law enforcement
Students and staff who are outside of classrooms during a Lockdown may be faced with the need to get out of sight without the benefit of an empty or open classroom.
In this situation, students and staff must be trained to hide or even Evacuate themselves away from the building.
If during a Lockdown an additional hazard manifests inside the school - i.e.: fire, flood, hazmat, then situational decisions must be made. Evacuation to an unplanned location may be required.
Examples of Lockdown Conditions
The following are simply some examples of when a school or emergency dispatch might call for a Lockout.
Dangerous animal within school building
Active shooter / Angry or violent parent or student