CAMPUS LIFE AND SAFETY AND SECURITY (CLASS) TASK FORCE 2010 Annual Report
2010 CLASS Task Force Initiatives
In 2010, the CLASS Task Force continued to assist campuses in meeting the Dec. 1, 2010, deadline for full National Incident Management System (NIMS) compliance of all postsecondary education campuses.
The compliance process has improved the relationship between institutions and community public safety partners and significantly enhanced each institution’s ability to deal with emergency situations.
During the year, several compliance forums were scheduled for participants to review and discuss progress and challenges for each of the steps found in the Campus Safety: Goal 2010 booklet. Participants were encouraged to share their successes and roadblocks for each of the NIMS steps.
To date, all Oklahoma public colleges and universities and 22 of 29 career technology districts are NIMS-compliant. This represents 89 percent of Oklahoma postsecondary institutions. The remaining institutions are expected to finish their work in early 2011. All Oklahoma postsecondary educational institutions and technology centers now realize the need to be involved in a community’s emergency planning process and be knowledgeable about NIMS and the Incident Command System (ICS). NIMS compliance enables Oklahoma postsecondary administrators and personnel to act and plan accordingly for any incident or event and in the best interests of students, staff and visitors.
Mental Health Collaborative Week
During the week of April 19-23, a total of 85 professionals representing mental health centers, higher education institutions and career technology centers met at 14 regional sites throughout the state. This statewide effort facilitated face-to-face and virtual meetings among higher education institutions, career technology centers and community mental health centers for the purpose of identifying opportunities to collaborate and combine resources to enhance mental health services available on postsecondary campuses.
Prior to the meeting, participants were asked to fill out a needs and assets survey. At the conclusion of the meeting, each region submitted a report on the results of the meeting.
Based on the reports submitted, the meetings were well-received by the participants. For many, this was the first time that the participants had met. Participants used the opportunity to become better acquainted with services available at the community mental health centers, and contact information was exchanged.
Several “next steps” were commonly identified, including setting up additional meetings, agreeing to continue to share information about available services, developing more mental health training opportunities for school counselors (particularly in the area of suicide prevention and identifying “signs and symptoms,” establishing protocols for dealing with mental health crises and establishing campus “threat assessment” teams.
Campus Security Training
As recipients of federal preparedness funding through the U.S. Department of Education’s Readiness and Emergency Management for Schools (REMS) and Emergency Management for Higher Education (EMHE) Discretionary Grant Program, local educational institutions and schools are required to fulfill NIMS implementation activities in close coordination with members of their local government and emergency response community. The NIMS-compliance requirements for higher education institutions and schools present a set of key school and campus emergency management activities that enhance the relationship between schools and campuses, respective local governments and community partners as they communicate, collaborate and coordinate on these NIMS activities.
Listed below is a representative sample of 2010’s NIMS training activities:
This past summer, Cameron University conducted a tabletop exercise using a tornado scenario.
In November, Central Technology Center participated in a tabletop exercise using a tornado scenario with its information center, general staff and command staff.
Eastern Oklahoma State College conducted an intraagency active shooter training session on the campus that included local sheriffs, the fire department, emergency medical trainers and Community Emergency Response Teams. EOSC also conducted a paper-drill training for building monitors and a campuswide gas leak scenario.
Great Plains Technology Center, along with Comanche County Emergency Management, the Region 3 Medical Emergency Medical Center office and Lawton Police Department Training Division, provided the staff and faculty with an unplanned drill followed by a tabletop debriefing exercise to help evaluate responses and emergency procedures used during the drill.
On the campus of Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College, a tabletop exercise, “Shooter on Campus,” was conducted with campus police and their command staff. This was a multipart exercise and will continue into the next year.
Northeastern State University held a multiagency test drill to measure campus preparedness. The drill, which lasted several hours, featured multiple scenarios to test emergency personnel and campus staff. Outside agencies involved included Tahlequah Fire Department, Tahlequah City Hospital, Tahlequah Public Works Authority, the Cherokee Nation W.W. Hastings Hospital, Cherokee County 911, Cherokee Nation Marshal Service and the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms.
In August, Northwestern Oklahoma State University, with the cooperation of local emergency management agencies, conducted an emergency training exercise on its Alva campus. The exercise involved the response to an explosion in the Student Center. Outside agencies involved in the exercise included Alva Police Department, Alva Fire Department, emergency medical services, Woods County Sheriff’s Office and county emergency management.
Oklahoma City Community College, along with Oklahoma City police and fire departments, Oklahoma City SWAT and Emergency Medical Services Authority, held three emergency drills this year with a morning and evening activation via campus phone, outdoor warning systems, and the college campus alert notification system.
Oklahoma Panhandle State University coordinates with the Texas County Emergency Management director for NIMS staff training. OPSU continues to conduct regular testing of fire alarms, tornado sirens and a campus loud speaker/emergency alert system.
During September and November, Southwestern Oklahoma State University had two training lockdowns on the Weatherford and Sayre campuses.
During the fall and spring semesters, Tulsa Community College prepared an “Active Shooter on Campus” excercise, along with fire and tornado drills. These drills were functional alerts causing emergency systems to activate, emergency responders to take action and outside agencies to respond.
During the summer, the University of Central Oklahoma conducted a tabletop foodborne illness scenario on its campus.
The University of Oklahoma conducted numerous trainings on all three campuses throughout the year, including tabletop exercises, fire drills and SWAT team training with other law enforcement agencies. In March, a full campus testing of the Emergency Communications Systems was performed, and a small scale test was performed, and a small scale test was performed in November.