Important facts about school closures and evacuations

Important facts about school closures and evacuations
Posted on 02/20/2017
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February 20, 2017

Yuba City Unified School District

Important facts about school closures and evacuations

In the event of a flood, the Office of Emergency Services and the Yuba City Unified School District Administration will coordinate the closure of schools and the evacuation of the affected areas. In situations where students must be evacuated from the schools, YCUSD will follow a plan developed by the district in close consultation with City and County emergency officials. Each school site has a unique evacuation plan to ensure student safety in an emergency.

Our first concern is student safety. During a flood evacuation, YCUSD will choose the safest and most effective way to ensure student safety:

Reuniting students with their families – Whenever possible, our first choice will be to keep students safe until an orderly dismissal and pickup can be arranged.

Evacuating to a safe location -- In extreme situations where time is critical, we will implement each school site’s evacuation plan and move students to a safe location.

Both the District’s plan and the individual school plans recognize the need to account for a variety of possible flooding scenarios. Evacuation plans will vary depending on the source of the flood and the direction the water is taking.

In our community, there are two primary causes for flooding:

A slow rise in water levels – A levee break or water breaching the top of a levee are situations which develop over a longer period. In these cases, schools will have already been closed under county flood plans. School site evacuations generally are not necessary.

Dam failures – Yuba City is in a region with numerous dams. The response to the failure of a dam depends heavily on which dam is involved and other factors. In some situations, there will be sufficient time for school closures or for parent notification for student pick-up. In others, a school evacuation could be necessary.

Our District’s emergency plan identifies the schools likely affected by each flood scenario and identifies an evacuation route and protocol for those schools.


Student safety during an evacuation

We recognize that evacuating students from a school introduces other issues, and we take every measure to ensure the safety of our students during the evacuation and when released to their families.

Parent sign-outs – Before a child is released from an evacuation site, a parent, guardian or emergency contact must sign the student out with a member of the school office staff. Barring contrary orders from public safety officials, or an overwhelming immediate danger that would prohibit automobile travel, if your child is a high school student that drives, your child will be allowed to call you so that you can grant them permission for them to leave campus in their automobile.

Designated guardians -- Only people listed on the student’s emergency cards as emergency contacts may sign out a student. Parents may wish to review and update their child’s emergency contact form before it’s needed.

Students remain supervised -- During an evacuation, your child’s teacher or a school staff member will remain with your child until they are picked up by a family member or someone with permission to pick them up.

Please remember that evacuating students from a school and reuniting them with families is a big job. Any extra patience you can show to school staff will be greatly appreciated.