KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Knox County Schools will consider adding a few new lessons for the upcoming school year during their Aug. 13 board meeting.

Annual drills for remote learning and armed intruders are in discussion as an Emergency Preparedness Planning and Training Policy E-122. The Director of Schools will develop and promote a district-wide safety and security plan to address various aspects of required safety and evacuation drills, incident response and support to schools.

The policy added remote learning to the safety training to plan ahead if Knox County Schools need to transition from in-person to remote learning. According to the final revised policy, each school will conduct at least one remote learning drill.

The current plan for a regular school day involves each principal developing a site-specific safety and security plan for annual review and update. The site-based plan shall be on file with the Chief of Security and the School Security Division.

The plan will include the following:

  • Evacuation routes and drills.
  • Opening and closing classroom and building doors.
  • Conduct and observation of regulatory and statutorily required drills, and after-action reporting.
  • Providing assistance to younger students and students with disabilities.
  • Checking unused rooms, toilets, etc. to see that all students are out of the building.
  • Reporting and removing safety hazards.
  • Protocols for inspection and maintenance of school-based emergency radios.

The policy will also require principals to ensure that the building escape routes are not locked or blocked during school hours; supervision will be required throughout school hours; teachers will instruct students in safety and emergency procedures during the first month of each semester; safety glasses and goggles are required for any activity involving hazardous activities.

According to the Knox County Schools Board of Education, Chief of School Security Jason Periard will add some language for clarification due to the changes in law. The policy was approved for the “first reading.”

Knox County Schools will operate in accordance with the established district and site-based safety and security plans.

The meeting to further discuss the policy and its updated charges are underway Aug. 13.

See the final revised Knox County Board of Education Policy E-122 “Emergency Preparedness Planning and Training” below.