Exercises of all kinds (e.g., walk-throughs, tabletops, drills, full-scale drills) play a key role in enhancing school safety planning because they provide an opportunity for the whole school community to consider, practice, and refine school and school district emergency operations plans (EOPs) and the procedures they put forth. Exercises and drills help education agencies illustrate and practice in a scenario-based setting how team roles and responsibilities, as well as the required emergency management functions (lockdown, evacuation, family reunification, etc.), will be carried out in the event of a real emergency. In many states, legislation requires state and local education agencies (SEAs and LEAs) to collaborate with partners to conduct exercises at specific points within the school year and to involve students, faculty, and staff in those activities.

REMS TA Center has created a new fact sheet, to be used by schools and the whole community, for modifying exercises and drills in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. This fact sheet presents ten recommendations for modifying exercises (walk-throughs, tabletops, drills, full-scale drills).

The REMS TA Center is operated by Synergy Enterprises, Inc. under Contract #GS-00F-115CA awarded by the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Safe and Supportive Schools.