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Delta school put into lockdown, but it was only a drill

Communication both in and out of a school under a lockdown will be restricted to law enforcement personnel during an incident
Parents are asked to adhere to law enforcement directives prohibiting the use of cellphones by staff and students during a lockdown.

A high school in Delta had a ockdown on Tuesday, but it was only a drill.

Parents of students attending Seaquam Secondary in North Delta were notified several days in advance of an upcoming police presence for a lockdown and a hold and secure drill at the school, aimed at providing valuable training in active threat response procedures.

The school district noted while the incidents of threatening behaviors in Delta schools are extremely low, it is hoped that parents and students find the knowledge of the procedures reassuring.

According to Delta Police, lockdown drills are conducted regularly, but the lunch time lockdown at Seaquam was different in that it occurred while students were not in a scheduled classroom.

The school district’s notification explained that a lockdown will be activated if there is a potential threat inside a school building. 

If the school is placed into a lockdown, the procedures include all school activities immediately ceasing, students and staff securing in the nearest classroom or office and, among other things, all doors to classrooms and offices locked and/or barricaded by the supervising adult.

No one is permitted to leave their room until the lockdown is over, while use of phones, computers and laptops will not be permitted.

Once the lockdown threat is over, the school will then transition into a hold and secure before the “all clear” is given. 

A hold and secure can also be activated if there are potential threats outside the school building. 

If the school is in a hold and secure, procedures include activities being conducted in a quiet and calm manner and, among other things, movement within the school being limited, while students and staff are to remain in their classroom or offices.

All exterior doors are locked and “no entry signs” will be placed on entrance doors.

Use of cell phones and laptops may be permitted.

The notice to parents also explained what parents and caregivers should do and not do, including if they hear about a serious emergency at their child’s school through the news, social media or other means.

They are not to proceed to the school but, instead, the district will update the school website as information is released by the Delta Police Department, including off-site evacuation and parent information locations.

The district explained that extra traffic near a school may impede police, fire and ambulance that are responding to the situation, while schools on lockdown will not let parents in as a school won’t have the resources to determine who is a parent/caregiver and who might be a threat.

In the event of an actual threat, a parent/caregiver if they try to enter could become a victim, the district warned.

Parents are also not to call the school.

They are also urged to not call or text their child’s cell phone during an emergency “as it is critical for them to remain silent and not draw attention to themselves or others in their group. If there is a real threat within the school, any sound could indicate where the students are hiding.”

The district also recommends that parents take the time to speak with their child about the safety procedures and to reinforce their importance.

Last November, a “hold classes” procedure was initiated at Seaquam, making sure all hallways were clear, during a situation. The school assured parents after that at no time students or staff were in danger.