Manual for emergencies needs improvement
THERE is a manual on how to respond to disasters and emergencies for schools.
According to Cebu City Division Superintendent Dr. Bianito Dagatan, they follow the Disaster Risk Reduction Resource Manual issued by the Department of Education (DepEd) Central Office.
But he admits that there is a need to improve the guidelines therein.
“For instance we have schools in the mountain areas and diri sa ubos (lowlands). We have general guidelines but we encourage that each school should have its guidelines that will fit their situation,” Dagatan added.
While Dagatan commended the teachers on their response to the crisis, he still saw a need for improvement.
Each school in Cebu City has its own Disaster Risk Reduction Management Officer.
In Cebu City, there are 58 elementary schools and 54 secondary schools. Of 54 secondary schools, 29 of these have night classes.
At the Capitol, the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (PDRRMO) will conduct trainings for public school teachers on how to manage bomb threats.
“Bomb threats can come from phone calls, texts and unattended bags. We will be informing our teachers on how to respond to bomb threats via calls and bomb threats coming from suspicious baggage,” said PDRRMO training officer Rafael Luche.
Teachers will likewise be trained on how to respond to bomb threats on a psychosocial level, he said.
“In the psychosocial first-aid training, our teachers are expected to debrief their students after a bomb threat has been made in their schools. Once they are trained on the psychosocial aspect, they will be able to effectively tell students not to panic while staying alert,” he added.
What to do
What to do
Under the manual, bomb threats come in the form of telephone calls or written notes.
What to do during a bomb threat?
Quoting the manual, “Treat all threats as real and report immediately to authorities.”
Remain calm and courteous after receiving the call.
Take as much information from the caller like his identity, specific characteristics and if possible the exact location of the bomb.
Apply delaying tactics and report all the details gathered to responsible people.
After reporting to the authorities, ask them to search the building properly, implement security measures in the premises and conduct post incident stress debriefing.
Sessions should also be conducted with the parents so as not to cause panic.
“Ang mga bata kay sige’g apil og drill, ang mga ginikanan sad mo agi og series og sessions para makahibaw unsay ilang buhaton,” Dagatan said.
(The pupils should always participate in drills and the parents should also attend sessions so they know what to do.)
Authorities suspect that a student was behind the bomb threat on the Mambaling National High School posted online under the account name of Diana dela Cruz.
Cebu City Councilor David Tumulak urged the teachers to help identify the person behind that account, which he said was a ghost account handled by one of the female students of the school, believed to be a member of a fraternity group.
“Naay nakahatag og information natu nga student. Pero kinahanglan man gud nga daghan ang mo-confirm (We got information that the one responsible is a student. But we need more people to confirm the information.),” Tumulak said.
As soon as the student is identified, she will be turned over to the custody of the Department of Social Welfare and Services (DSWS) of the city government.
He also said fraternity groups must be identified and given guidance so they can be used to promote progress of the school.
Disclaimer: The comments uploaded on this site do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of management and owner of Cebudailynews. We reserve the right to exclude comments that we deem to be inconsistent with our editorial standards.