St. Mary’s National School aims to protect the well being of its students by providing a safe and nurturing environment at all times. Our mission is to create a human environment which is conducive to the personal development of all.
St. Mary’s National School has taken a number of measures to create a coping, supportive and caring ethos in the school. The school has also formulated a number of policies and procedures to be followed with a view to ensuring the physical and psychological safety of staff and students, both in ordinary time and in the event of a critical incident.
Definition of a Critical Incident:
St. Mary’s National School, Croom, recognises a critical incident to be ‘an incident or sequence of events that overwhelms the normal coping mechanism of the school and disrupts the running of the school’ Critical incidents may involve one or more pupils, staff, the school, or our local community. Type of incidents might include:
St. Mary’s National School hopes that in the event of an incident this policy will help staff react quickly and effectively and to maintain a sense of control. It should also help us to achieve a return to normality as soon as possible and ensure that the effects on the students and the staff will be limited.
Ethos — Assisted by Support Structures
We have put systems in place to lessen the probability of the occurrence of an incident. These measures address both the physical and psychological safety of both staff and students.
St. Mary’s National School aims to create an open and encouraging environment in the school where students can talk about their difficulties and seek help for the same.
Critical Incident Management Team:
St. Mary’s National School has set up a Critical Incident team in line with best practice and will meet once a year to review and update the plan.
The members of the Critical Incident Team are:
Critical Incident Rooms:
In the event of a critical incident, the Old School Building Hall will be the main room used to meet the staff, students, parents and visitors involved.
Contact Numbers/Emergency Numbers:
The Secretary has responsibility for maintaining an up to date list of contact umbers for students and their parent(s) / guardian(s). The school secretary has responsibility for maintaining an up to date list of contact numbers for the emergency support services is displayed in the Staff Room, the Secretary’s Office and the Principal’s Office.
The Fire Safety Officer has responsibility for ensuring that the evacuation procedures are displayed near the door of every classroom. The evacuation procedures (fire drill) are practiced at least once a term.
Training and Staff Development:
The school will provide opportunities for staff and members of the Board of Management to attend information/training meetings on such issues such as suicide, grieving, first aid.
Visitors, including parents must report to the school’s secretary’s office, identify themselves and state their business in the school. Visitors will not be allowed beyond the school’s reception office except at the invitation of a member of staff.
Members of the media must report to the school’s secretary’s office, identify themselves and state their business in the school. Members of the media will not be allowed beyond the school’s secretary’s office except at the invitation of the Principal or Deputy Principal.
Only the Principal or Deputy Principal in consultation with the Critical Incident Management Team if possible will prepare a brief written statement.
The Principal and Deputy Principal in consultation with the Critical Incident Management Team if possible, will prepare a brief, written statement to include;
Some of the following procedures may be considered in the event of a critical incident:
Short Term Actions: (1st Day)
As far as possible maintain normal school routine.
Medium Term Actions (24-72 hours)
Long Term Actions
Monitoring, Review and Evaluation
The Critical Incident Policy committee will review the policy every 3 years or before the formation of a new Board of Management. Ongoing review and evaluation will take cognisance of changing information, legislation, developments in the school based programme and feedback from parents/guardians, teachers and students. The policy will be revised as necessary in the light of such review and evaluation and within the framework of school planning.