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Hart District receives $152,000 grant for emergency readiness

Posted: June 12, 2008 1:38 a.m.
Updated: August 13, 2008 5:03 a.m.
 

 

The William S. Hart Union High School District has received a $152,000 grant to expand emergency preparedness programs for local schools.

The Readiness and Emergency Management for Schools grant is one of 92 awarded to schools and school districts in 34 states by the Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools of the U.S. Department of Education. Recipients were recently announced by U.S. Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings.

"Nothing is more important to Americans than the safety of their children," Spellings said. "These grants will support that effort by helping more school districts strengthen their crisis planning and better coordinate with the entire community to ensure the safety of our schools and students."

The Hart district's grant will cover a nine-point program of action which includes training, purchase of communications equipment and supplies, and implementation of a mobile command post which can be moved to specific schools in an emergency.

One key provision is planning for a disaster preparedness summit which would involve the community's vital emergency links such as the Red Cross, FEMA, local media, fire and sheriff's departments, the city of Santa Clarita and volunteers from the local amateur radio club. Parents and community members would be invited to attend the live summit, and a video of the program would be rebroadcast on local television and Web outlets.

The Hart district has completed an audit of disaster bins and emergency supplies at all of its schools, and has updated supplies where necessary. Grant funds would help replenish the emergency supply packs located in all district classrooms.

Radios have been installed at all schools and the district office, and 24 district employees completed a recent amateur radio certification course. An additional 45 Hart district administrators and team leaders participated in a certified emergency training program taught by Donna Nuzzi, city emergency services supervisor. The grant will fund ongoing amateur radio training and purchase of additional radios.

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