Lock Down – A parents guide

What is a lockdown, why is my child having to do lockdown drills and is it all a fuss about nothing?

The media is raising awareness of lockdown procedures, drills and in some case real life implementation of a lockdown in schools up and down the country. But to a parent who hasn’t heard much about a school lockdown other than that portrayed by the media we understand it’s a pretty scary concept.

So, the department for education (Dfe) has said that schools should be taking steps to ensure that there is a plan and policy in place should there be a situation where a lockdown is required. Schools have taken this advice and interpreted it in different ways. Some have got advice from organisations such as ourselves, in which case we work with them to audit their site, put in place a policy and train staff in what to do and what to drill with the children. Others have setup policies and procedures on their own.

Which ever way your child’s school have decided to act, as long as they have realised that a lockdown is something that needs thought and implementation you shouldn’t be worried.

A school may need to invoke a lockdown for many reasons, this could be a situation in close proximity to the school where everyone needs to remain safe. It could be a stray dog on the school ground, along with many other issues.

At the time of a lockdown in your child’s school, the following will typically happen;

  • A clear signal is sent around the school to indicate the invoking of a lockdown, where possible something calm and not causing panic.
  • Children have a safe place in the classroom that they move to.
  • External doors and windows are secured.
  • Blinds are drawn.

The school will then communicate with relevant authorities to find out the next steps and to ensure that children and staff remain safe and secure whilst the lockdown is in place.

Hopefully this article will give you an insight into what happens during a lockdown inside a typical school. The idea is to keep everyone safe, not alarming students or making them panic and a method of communicating a lockdown as effectively as possible.

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