A Message from the Principal
What Parents and Guardians Should Know
Schools should be considered one of the safest places in our communities even knowing that an emergency can strike anywhere at any time.
During an emergency, the safety of our students and staff is our number one priority. In order to provide an effective response to any school crisis, Dasmesh Punjabi School has developed an Emergency Response Plan.
The Dasmesh Emergency Response plan works together with other local emergency sectors, such as local Police, Fire Department and Ambulance services. This collaboration is needed as a school emergency could require the involvement of numerous agencies.
As a school, we are required to complete 6 Fire and Evacuation drills, 3 Earthquake drills, 1 Shelter in place drill and 2 Lock Down drills. All staff is regularly trained on emergency protocols and drills are practiced throughout the school year.
For security reasons, certain components of our emergency response plan are not publicly available. The guide that follows, outlines the key elements of the Plan and answers questions parents frequently ask regarding emergency preparedness.
I hope you find this guide helpful and informative. We appreciate your support and assistance in our continued safety efforts.
Jaspal Singh Dhaliwal
Dasmesh Punjabi School
Throughout the year, Dasmesh Punjabi School conducts training and drills to help better prepare students and staff for possible emergency situations. When a school is confronted with an emergency, staff will assess the situation and then decide on a course of action.
These exercises prepare students and staff to act quickly and help to minimize a child’s fear during a real emergency. In addition to the procedures described below, Dasmesh Punjabi School staff and students also practise protocols such as “Drop-Cover and Hold,” a method of protecting vital body parts during some natural disasters. All staff and students are required to participate in these drills.
Lock-Downs are usually used in response to acts or threats of violence to students and/or staff directly impacting the school. During a Lock-Down all doors to and within the school are locked. No one is permitted in or out of any area once it has been locked. Students and staff must respond very quickly to a Lock-Down command to get to a safe location before doors are locked. No one, other than law enforcement, is permitted access to the building until the Lock-Down is over.
Fire and Evacuation Drill
An evacuation requires all students and staff to leave the school and go to an alternate location. At Dasmesh, this means evacuating to our soccer field. In other cases, students and staff may need to go to an evacuation centre. Our evacuation centre is Khalsa Diwan Society Gurdwara, located on 33094 South Fraser Way, Abbotsford.
Dasmesh Punjabi School participates in the annual Great British Columbia Shake Out. The Shake Out is used to prepare students in the event of an earthquake. Students are instructed to “Drop, Cover and Hold On”
Shelter in Place Drill
Generally, Shelter-in-Place is used during an environmental emergency, such as severe storms or chemical spills. During a Shelter-in-Place, students and staff retreat to safe zones to seek shelter. This includes having students or staff who are outdoors come back into the school. Each school’s emergency response plan identifies the safest location for its occupants and how to seal a room from hazardous conditions. Students will not be released or dismissed until the situation has been resolved
Reuniting with you Child
We recognize when an emergency occurs parents will be worried and want to be reunited with their child as quickly as possible. It is our intention to make this happen. To ensure every child’s safety and the safety of staff, specific procedures have been established for releasing students. Parents are asked to adhere to the parent-child reunification procedures listed below. Staff will work hard to ensure these procedures take place without delay. Please understand the process will still take some time. We ask for your patience when you arrive at the Parent-Child Reunion Area. Parent-Child Reunion Procedures
If you are unable to pick up your child, he/she will be kept at the Parent-Child Reunion Centre until alternate arrangements can be made. Your child will be supervised at all times.
When an Emergency Occurs
Although your natural instinct may be to go to the school to safeguard your child, please understand that doing so could impede the response to the situation. Going to the school may interfere with emergency crews’ and school personnel’s efforts to deal with the emergency. Extra vehicles and people at the site make the task more difficult. Please follow the instructions provided to you through the communications channels outlined below.
Please do not come to the school to pick up your child unless requested to do so. If you arrive at the school in the midst of an emergency, please respect the protocol in progress. While we understand personal circumstances or initial reactions might move you to do something contrary to the school’s established procedures, we cannot compromise the safety of students or staff to accommodate individual requests that could put anyone at risk.
Please DO NOT CALL THE SCHOOL and DO NOT CALL YOUR CHILD’S CELL PHONE.
Parents are asked not to call the school or their child’s cell phone during an emergency.
Keeping You Informed During an Emergency
During an emergency, it is unlikely you will be able to reach the school by phone. We will, however, make every effort to contact parents directly or by one of the methods noted below.
Stay tuned to radio stations for news alerts.
Website, Social Media and Automated Phone System.
If you have any further questions, please contact our office (604) 826-1666
Dasmeshschool.com @dasmeshschool @dasmeshschool