The Davenport School District has updated its plans on how to handle hazardous weather, armed intruders, and other emergencies. This week, to comply with a state law for all districts, the board of education approved what's called a "High Quality Emergency Operations Plan."
Director of Operations Mike Maloney says the district has had plans, and held drills, for all its schools and facilities, for many years. But one of the new requirements is about language - that the language used in emergency situations be the same as what's used by police, fire, and other first responders.
"In the case of an actual emergency, everyone has some idea what the protocols are and what the language used means with precision."
The updated plans have also been approved by the fire and police departments, and the county's office of emergency management.
Maloney says it's important during training for emergencies to be positive.
"Particularly for our young kids, it's not 'this is what we do because we're scared and it's not a safe place to be - this is how we stay safe, these are the things we do to make sure that we're safe and that we're all okay together.'"
The new law for Iowa school districts also sets minimum requirements for emergency drills - at least once a year for tornado drills and fire evacuations. And the publication of ways school staff, parents, and local residents can report possible threats.