Nebraska School Safety

In 2014, the Nebraska Legislature mandated multiple safety and security measures for Nebraska schools: the development of standards to use as guidelines for creating safer and more secure schools; the submission of safety plans by all schools; and all schools have a security assessment by the school security director.

After the standards were developed, four main areas emerged that best represent the overall big picture of safety and security that translates into everyday planning in Nebraska schools:

Prevention (aimed at preventing an incident)

Preparedness (targeted at limiting incident casualties, chaos, and destruction

Response (focused intentional planning for responding to an incident both immediate and long term)

Recovery (designed to restore climate and environment to pre-incident conditions)

 The basics regarding the state statute regarding school safety:

§79-2,144

The state school security director appointed pursuant to section 79-2,143 shall be responsible for providing leadership and support for safety and security for the public schools. Duties of the director include, but are not limited to:

(3) Conducting an assessment of the security of each public school building, which assessment shall be completed by August 31, 2019

The Big Picture of School Safety

This is the big picture of school safety in the state of Nebraska. It illustrates the four basic parts of school safety that align to our Nebraska standards; Prevention and Preparedness and Response and Recovery.

Steps to the Security Assessment for all school buildings:

Step 1

  • Safety committee/team completes the on-line self-assessment located at NDE Security Self-Assessment
  • The team may first want to complete paper copy prior to electronic copy
  • The school will have access to the completed electronic copy
  • Other details for the security assessment (Word document)

Step 2

Step 3

  •  NDE Security Assessor will contact point of contact identified on the self-assessment to schedule a school visit to validate the security self-assessment

Step 4

  •  NDE Security Assessor will conduct the security assessment validation

Dr. Mario Scalora and Dr. Denise Bulling of the University of Nebraska Public Policy Center are partnering with Dr. Jolene Palmer, the Nebraska Department of Education Safety and Security Director, to conduct basic and advanced threat assessment training for Nebraska schools. The training is sponsored by local Educational Service Units in all areas of the state and features guidelines created by the Public Policy Center that translate the science and practice of threat assessment for use by local school and community teams. Participants in the training include educators, administrators, law enforcement, mental health, public health, and human resource professionals around the state of Nebraska. This training utilizes a threat assessment strategy specifically tailored for rural settings and other schools with limited resources.

Resilience Strategies for Educators: Three training dates in Nebraska

Techniques for Self-Care and Peer Support: Training of Educators

This on-site, day-long training is designed to assist caregivers in schools and school districts to better understand resilience strategies following natural disasters and other emergency events.

As part of a comprehensive school emergency operations plan, it is important for schools and school districts to understand how to prevent, protect against, mitigate, respond to, and recover from critical incidents, including psychological recovery. The RSE training is designed to provide educators with a better understanding of resilience strategies that can be used to increase their ability to work more effectively with students impacted by stress, loss, and trauma brought on by community or family violence, natural and man-made disasters, and economic hardship.

Locations and Dates:

June 4: Norfolk Public Schools Administration Building, 512 West Philip Avenue, Norfolk, Nebraska

July 23: Nebraska City Lied Lodge, 2700 Sylvan Road, Nebraska City, Nebraska

July 25: Grand Island Heartland Events Center, 700 E Stolley Park Road, Grand Island, Nebraska

To register, email: carol.bom@nebraska.gov – Put date of preferred event in the subject line please.

Threat Assessment Training:

Take your team to Nebraska’s Summer Threat Assessment training. Two sessions of Level 1 training are available this summer:
June 5-6 at ESU 8, 302 M Street in Neligh, Nebraska and June 25-26 in Beatrice, Nebraska at ESU 5, 900 W Court Street.

Training runs from 9:00-3:30 CST. To register: https://www.esupdo.org 

Please note: An opportunity exists for schools to have the registration discounted when a team of four or more individuals attend with the roles of administrator, staff, law enforcement officer and mental health professional are represented. If all roles are represented and attend both days of training, the cost will be $20 per person each day.

Updated May 16, 2019 8:37am