This multiple-case qualitative study was conducted to examine the perceptions of community members, students, and staff regarding school crisis management following a 2006 tornado and 2010 bus accident in a small rural school district in Missouri. Online surveys were collected from 66 participants, and 10 follow-up interviews were completed with students and community members. Analysis of the data resulted in the development of five themes for improvements in the event of future emergencies: (a) prepare for more complete and effective communication during and following an emergency; (b) provide for additional safety training in general; (c) account for every child prior to releasing students to anyone; (d) avoid use of back two rows on any buses; and (e) allow students to be able to use cell phones. Conclusions of the study included the following: Nearly 100% of the respondents felt a high degree of confidence in the district; however, they did have recommendations on ways to improve the district's response to emergencies. Recommendations included developing a parent advisory team to assist with communication during crises; providing parent advisory team training for emergency preparation; providing further training for students in several areas of concern; using the parent advisory team to assist with accounting for every child during and following emergencies; ensuring that every building has a backup paper copy of demographic information on all children; eliminating the use of the two back seats on school buses; and re-examining the school district policy on cell phone use. Recommendations for future research include researching the lessons the Joplin School District learned after its massive tornado of May, 2011; investigating other school districts that have instituted a parent advisory team to assist with emergencies; and developing an updated safety guide with greater detail than the current safety guide.
|Commitee:||VanMeter, Gary, Vitale, Cynthia|
|School:||Missouri Baptist University|
|School Location:||United States -- Missouri|
|Source:||DAI-A 74/03(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Keywords:||Bus accident, Cell phone, Crisis, Crisis management, Emergency, Rural education, School, Tornado|
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