One of the top priorities at the Geneva School District is to ensure a healthy environment so students can learn, and teachers can teach. Everyone in the district is instrumental in our safety and security efforts, including administrators, teachers, custodians, office staff and students as well as their parents.
“If you see something, say something,” said Geneva School District Safety and Security Coordinator Tim Baker, referring to the district’s confidential Safe Schools Tip Line that is available for reporting any concerns to help someone get the support they need. “This is the most important thing for parents, students and teachers to know.”
Baker said that even a simple suggestion to check in with a student can be valuable, and the Safe Schools Tip Line (geneva304.org/SpeakUp
) is an easy and confidential way to pass along information. “We can’t see everything. We want students to feel safe sharing information in confidence,” he added. “The smallest nugget of information can be part of a bigger picture that can be tremendously valuable.”
In addition, a student or parent can also call school administrators to pass along concerns, or a student can seek out a trusted teacher, he said.
In addition, the district has extensive Emergency Response Plans that follow guidelines from the National Incident Management System (NIMS). Administrators, faculty and staff take safety training throughout the year. One such training that was held in June this year, was a program offered through the “I Love You Guys” Foundation. The crisis response program, used by more than 30,000 schools and organizations worldwide, was developed using research-based based practices and is led by trainers with personal and professional experience with school and public safety.
Along with safety training, all students and faculty participate in six drills each year required by Illinois state law. The drills include a bus evacuation drill, tornado drill, three fire drills (one of which is observed by the Geneva Fire Department), and a lockdown drill observed by the Geneva Police Department and the Kane County Sheriff’s office.
Parents can support these efforts by following the proper response protocol in an emergency.
“The response of our parents is critical,” Baker explained. Although a parent’s first response may be to go to the school, but the district asks that parents avoid going to the school as this can could interfere with our first responders.
In an emergency, the district asks parents to rely on its official communication channels including the district website, its social media sites, text messages, email, and automated phone calls. As such, it’s important that parents update all contact information in Home Access
each year, including emergency contacts.