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Basic Components of Pandemic Planning

Every district should have an
Emergency Management Plan that:
• Addresses all four phases of emergency
management planning (Mitigation and
Prevention, Preparedness, Response and
Recovery.) Identify stakeholders and partners Create and implement a surveillance system
Identify a contact within the local public in partnership with state and/or local health
• Is flexible enough to address multiple haz-
health department and collaborate with that departments to identify and track student
ards (be “all-hazard plans.”)
entity to create complementary plans, coordinate absences due to illness, which would allow the
• Is practiced on a regular basis. with other partners, and communicate consis- rapid detection of unusual changes or trends in
• Is developed in an interactive, cross-cutting tently with the public. student health.
manner, in collaboration with community
partners and stakeholders. Identify and coordinate with other key Develop an Incident Command System (ICS)
stakeholders, such as law enforcement, school specific to a pandemic, that identifies roles and
• Is based upon sound data and information.
security personnel, local emergency manage- responsibilities of educators, law enforcement,
• Includes provisions for being continually ment office, businesses, community and faith- and health officials in advance of an incident.
reviewed and updated regularly. based organizations.
• Is coordinated with community pandemic
influenza planning efforts, as well as state Review and refine policies and authorities Consider and plan with community partners
policy and planning efforts. Review school district’s or school’s Continuity of to address issues specific to your school
Operations Plan (COOP) and Business Continuity environment, such as:
Plans (BCP), which outline procedures for con- • Students with special needs, including those who
Pandemic Plan tinued function during an extended emergency. are in special education, receiving supplemental
This plan is built upon components in Consider: services at school, English Language Learners, or
existing emergency management plans • Essential functions, goods, and services that have special health care needs;
and would contain elements unique to an must be maintained under a variety of conditions; • Working with Child Nutrition Directors to help
influenza pandemic. • Essential tasks that can be performed from oth- families identify sources for feeding programs
er locations such as home, as well as technology for students who receive meals at school in the
support necessary to implement such measures; event of long-term school closures;
• Essential people and material support; • Potential social services needed during and
• Delegations of authority and after pandemic has ended;
• Personnel/Human Resources policies (leave, • Possible alternative uses of school buildings
Communication Plan disability, payroll, potential high absenteeism). during a pandemic (such as for mass immuniza-
• Identify audiences and key messages tions or hospitals);
(students parents, staff, etc.) Identify legal authorities for school closures, • Potential uses of school buses during pandemic
• Focus on clear, accurate, consistent, and limitations on responsibilities and functions (such and if/how this affects contracts;
timely communications. as school lunch provision), and school’s potential • Current alternative uses for schools and deter-
• Identify trusted spokesperson (also, iden- responsibilities and liabilities. mine necessary policies/procedures under school
tify who will be lead for health matters.) closures;
Review and refine supply policies and • Capacity to address requirements for cleaning
• Identify trusted media partners. contracts including potentially ordering and the building if it was used for community health
• Establish redundant communications meth- warehousing items such as tissues, soap, or needs or if there were sick students;
ods identified in advance (primary, second- hand sanitizer. • Fiscal, academic, emotional and physical recov-
ary and tertiary methods identified and all ery issues, including;
parties are familiar with them.) Initiate or expand prevention • Return to learning;
and education efforts • Ability of students, family, and staff to access
• Conduct preventive hand-washing and cough/ available mental health supports, particularly
Plan for continuity of learning sneezing etiquette campaigns. during a crisis if schools are cancelled;
or instruction • Encourage staff, faculty, and students to stay • Bereavement needs; and
• Consider alternate learning strategies. home when ill. • Availability of mental health service
• Provide information to parents, staff and stu- providers, including community and
• Consider potential restructuring of school dents about elements of pandemic plan. faith-based organizations.
calendar.