Maintaining district (school) safety remains a top priority at Ichabod Crane Central School District.
If you see something, please say something. Please contact your building principals and assistant principals if you want to report a safety concern. Click here to view our Contact Guide.
We encourage you to visit our District Safety Q&A page for detailed responses to many questions, including how we inform the public about our district safety initiatives and how we use threat assessment at all of our schools, and so much more.
District Safety Consultants: Needham Risk Management
Needham was established in 2003, and their highly experienced and competent staff have over 20 years of experience providing an array of services, including school health and safety consulting.
Needham developed the District-Wide School Safety Plan, in conjunction with ICC administrators and staff. The plan adheres strictly to New York State regulations and guidelines.
Each building has its own Emergency Response Plan, as well as a Safety Team, which meets regularly and is co-chaired by a building administrator and Needham Risk Management. These individual building plans are regularly reviewed by the District Wide Safety and Health Committee, as well as the Safety Teams. We also have updated all of our threat assessment procedures.
This new partnership with Needham has allowed us to greatly expand our professional development. This has included:
- School safety and security (SAVE – Schools Against Violence in Education) training for building and district administrators
- SAVE training for staff and faculty
- SAVE training for high school students
- Playground safety training for playground monitors
- Threat assessment training for administrators and the district’s counseling team
- Chemical hygiene training
- Stop the Bleed
- Supplemental first Aid training for Physical Education Staff
Additionally, each school building is required by state law to perform 12 emergency drills each year. Of those 12 drills, eight must be evacuation drills (fire drills) and the remaining four must be lockdown drills.
We are highly cognizant that high profile acts of violence, particularly in schools, can confuse and frighten children who may feel in danger or worry that their friends or loved-ones are at risk. They will look to adults for information and guidance on how to react. Parents and school personnel can help children feel safe by establishing a sense of normalcy and security and talking with them about their fears.
Please click on this document compiled by the National Association of School Psychologists with detailed tips about how to talk to children about violence.
We recognize that it is of great importance to continuously update the public about our school safety policies and procedures.
On Sept. 8, we hosted a Community Safety Forum, where Needham consultants gave an overview of the SAVE (Safe Schools Against Violence in Education) law, and summarized the collaborative work they have done district-wide. The forum was recorded and can be viewed here.
Additionally, we mailed about 7,000 Fall Newsletters to all our district residents, regardless of whether they have children attending the district. One of the articles in the annual publication went into great detail about our different school safety policies and procedures, as well as a school safety assembly led by Needham for High School students and staff. Click here to read the digital version of the newsletter.
Mental health awareness, interventions and in-district professionals continue to be essential components of each of our buildings.
Using grant funds to support this ongoing mental health initiative, the district has hired several new staff members over the last few years. This includes an additional school psychologist and school counselor this year. In 2021-22, we hired an additional social worker.
In addition to our own counseling staff, we continue to partner with the Columbia County Department of Mental Health, who has provided a social worker onsite one day each week. At the beginning of the school year, our experienced school counselors introduced themselves in classrooms across the district. Since then, they have also visited classrooms to discuss mental health.
During the back-to-school professional development days, the Capital Area Area School Development Association (CASDA) provided Middle and High School staffers with presentations and workshops focusing on student mental health and engagement. They emphasized how to build community district-wide, to best support our children’s mental health, to identify potential mental health needs, and how to connect children and families with area resources and treatment. District staff have also implemented new social-emotional learning (SEL) curricula to help our students build their emotional resilience so they are better equipped to deal with daily stresses.
Going forward, please continue to visit this page for updates, and please visit our Board of Education Policies page, which contains numerous board-approved policies regarding safety in our school district. The district’s K-12 Counseling Department website also includes a wide range of information and resources, including details about our on-campus mental health professionals and services, out-of-district resources (such as the local Mobile Crisis Team, Columbia County Mental Health Center and the 988 Suicide and Crisis Hotline), and much more.
If you have questions, please use our Who Do I Contact Guide, which outlines who to contact concerning a particular area.