Blog Archives

Swatting, school bomb and shooting threats: Are FBI federal charges coming soon?

Posted by on November 2, 2015

Schools across the nation experienced an uptick in school bomb and shooting threats in recent weeks. Many of these threats are believed to have been made by local individuals such as students or former students. But there are also increasing indicators that a number of these threats are “swatting” incidents — hoax threats intended to trigger […]

Study finds rapid escalation of violent school threats

Posted by on February 9, 2015

[Originally published: 2/9/15; Updated: March, 2016] A nationwide epidemic of violent school threats is breeding fear, anxiety and frustration for educators, children and parents. While the vast majority of these threats are anonymous and turn out to be hoaxes, they have to be investigated and taken seriously. Hundreds of schools are losing classroom teaching time, […]

Five lessons from the NFL for school superintendents, boards and principals

Posted by on September 18, 2014

Domestic violence and child abuse cases involving National Football League (NFL) players have dominated the headlines this week. How the NFL and individual teams have managed, or in some aspects mismanaged, the cases have been even a bigger focus of news coverage. The NFL experience provides five important teachable moments for superintendents, school boards and principals […]

Schools face new wave of violent threats sent by social media and other electronic means, study says

Posted by on February 25, 2014

More than one-third of violent threats to schools since the beginning of this school year were delivered by social media, email, text messaging, and other electronic forms, according to a new study by our national school safety consulting firm. “The cost of these threats in taxpayer dollars for police response, lost instruction time, and anxiety […]

Lockdown communications with parents during school emergencies

Posted by on November 4, 2013

Few things scare a mother more than a lockdown or safety crisis at her child’s school. Fear makes calm, sensible people frantic and fierce. This is a tough time for schools. Their first priority is protecting children. A lockdown is serious business. School staffers are tied up assessing the threat, talking to police, making sure […]

School safety post-Sandy Hook: Proven, tested strategies prevail

Posted by on September 29, 2013

For the past nine months, our team of school security and communications consultants have maintained a steady approach and methodical voice of reason while serving as an anchor to superintendents, boards and principals who are facing a tidal wave of school-community emotion on safety issues. We have focused on proven prevention, preparedness, response and communications […]

School safety post-Sandy Hook: Context and focus from up close

Posted by on September 28, 2013

Even the most seasoned of school safety professionals have struggled to make sense out of the senseless — the loss of 20 children and six school staff at Sandy Hook Elementary School on December 14, 2012. While I do not believe most of us will ever make sense out of it, I have found some […]

School safety post-Sandy Hook: Focus on “How?,” not on “Wow!”

Posted by on September 28, 2013

More than nine months have passed since the December 14, 2012, school shooting attack upon Sandy Hook Elementary School in the Newtown, Connecticut, school district where 20 children and 6 school staff members were left dead. The horrific nature of the attack upon our youngest and most vulnerable children — elementary students — served as […]

When social media turns into trouble: School threats, rumors, fights and more

Posted by on June 10, 2013

They’re talking about your school on social media:  gossip on Facebook, school fights on YouTube, threats on Twitter. Every child with a cell phone, every driver who sees a bus accident, every parent who disagrees with a teacher…they’re all texting and tweeting and posting pictures, videos and comments. Do you know what they’re saying? Information […]

You do have a school Crisis Communications plan – don’t you?

Posted by on May 20, 2013

If you ever face a major crisis at your school – and we hope you don’t – you’ll learn the real meaning of the phrase “misery loves company.”  Hundreds of reporters will descend upon you, and they’re not just the local reporters on the education beat. You will face reporters from major newspapers and online […]