Thursday, May 22, 2008

GEMA Recognizes Mitchell County Schools for Implementing Approved Safety Plan

The Georgia Emergency Management Agency (GEMA) congratulates Beauford Hicks, superintendent for the Mitchell County School System, for adopting an approved safety plan.

“Although spared from the most recent bout of severe weather, Mitchell County has experienced its share of devastating tornadoes in the past and officials realize it is imperative they be prepared for an emergency,” says GEMA Director Charley English. “GEMA commends Mitchell County school officials for creating safety plans for all five schools that take an ‘all-hazards’ approach to prepare for man-made and natural disasters.”

By law, every public school in Georgia must develop and implement a wide-ranging safety plan that addresses acts of violence or terrorism, natural disasters, hazardous materials and radiological incidents. GEMA’s School Safety Unit has developed a planning guide for schools to help them create their plans.

In addition, GEMA’s School Safety Unit provides services that help schools have a safe and secure school year. GEMA’s school safety coordinators offer training and technical assistance to educators, emergency management and public safety personnel. This includes site surveys, classes on weapons screening, school bus safety, gangs, bullying, exercise design and bomb threat management. They also respond to school crises.

For more information on school safety or GEMA’s School Safety Unit, call GEMA toll-free in Georgia at 1-800-TRY-GEMA or visit For more information on specific risks in your area and how to prepare for them, contact your local emergency management agency.

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