In an effort to continuously improve and strengthen our district’s emergency response, staff from Williston Basin School District #7 took part in reunification exercises this week. Reunification can happen on-site or off-site, and comes into play when students are not able to dismiss from school in their normal way. This can happen for a variety of reasons, including power outages and gas leaks, or other internal or external hazards. When deciding what process to use, it was an easy decision for Wyndy McGinley, Director of Student Services, who reached out to the I Love U Guys Foundation for training on their Standard Reunification Method (SRM).
Stacy Avila, Adjunct Instructor, and Dan Rector, CEMS Emergency Management Planner with the I Love U Guys Foundation were more than happy to come to Williston and work with the reunification team made up of district staff members, along with representatives from the Williston Police Department, Watford City Police Department, and Williston Fire/EMS.
On the first day of the two-day workshop, the group had a refresher on the Standard Response Protocol (SRP), followed by a deep dive into the Standard Reunification Method (SRM). Day two was all about hands-on experience. The group was divided into three teams, who rotated through various roles in the reunification exercises. The practice gave the group confidence that if there is ever a reunification scenario in real life, they will be able to come together and successfully reunify students and staff with their families. Mrs. McGinley had this to say, “We are honored to be the first North Dakota school to receive this training. It was a very important step in our school safety plan and I am very grateful to be part of this reunification team.”
We want to thank Stacy, Dan and the I Love U Guys Foundation for taking the time to come to North Dakota.
For more information on the I Love U Guys Foundation, including information on the SRP and SRM, check out https://iloveuguys.org/.