Welcome to SONS

When will it happen?On April 20, 1999, two students from Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado carried out our nation’s deadliest school shooting. At the end of their hour-long rampage, they had killed 12 students and one teacher, before taking their own lives. More recently, shootings in Bailey, Colorado and at an Amish school in Nickel Mines, Pennsylvania serve as yet other tragic reminders of the importance of school safety and preparedness.

Each crisis brings a renewed commitment to ensuring our schools are safe, and a realization that such tragedies can happen anywhere. The protection of students is an awesome responsibility for school superintendents, principals, teachers, staff, and public safety officials in each community they serve. Since Columbine, a great deal of progress has been made toward improving the overall level of safety and preparedness within schools.

One initiative that has shown great promise is the (SONS) Securing Our Nations Students program. SONS is a comprehensive, all-hazards approach to ensuring a safe and secure school environment that is conducive to learning. The SONS program was developed by Critical Response Solutions and is based on best practices used across the nation.

The SONS Toolkit and website is a resource to assist school districts and their communities with crisis planning and preparedness. It contains samples and templates that can be used to jumpstart or update your community’s school preparedness program.

The Toolkit includes guidance on the following:

  • Forming a multi-disciplinary crisis response team;
  • Developing a crisis plan;
  • Assessing threats;
  • Creating and disseminating standardized floor plans; and
  • Training and exercises.

This website will help you expand your knowledge about security and expose you to products and services that will help you maintain a secure learning environment for our students.

We all recognize that the families within our communities rely on schools to keep their children safe during the day. While the vast majority of schools remain a safe haven for our youth, the unfortunate reality is that school districts can be touched directly or indirectly by crisis. Therefore, we must be prepared.

SONS is committed to supporting communities across the nation. We encourage school, public safety, and public health professionals to use the SONS Toolkit and collaborate in an effort to make our nation’s schools as safe and prepared as they can be.

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