School Safety and Crisis Management

This section of the toolkit provides evidence-based resources at the local, state, and federal levels, for schools to create safe and supportive learning environments that naturally prevent violence and ensure students have access to the supports they need to be successful both inside and outside of the classroom.


FEMA Ready Kids

This page features preparedness, planning, response, and recovery resources to help emergency
managers and practitioners integrate the needs of children and youth into their disaster planning


School Crisis Center: for Educators

Webinar from Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles for educators to talk to and support students and
themselves during the pandemic.


School Crisis Center: for Parents

Webinar from Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles for parents to talk to and support students and
themselves during the pandemic.


School Crisis Center: for Clinicians
This webinar discusses effective communication strategies for clinicians and ways to talk to and support children during the COVID-19 pandemic. Strategies to help parents communicate with their children are also included.

Crisis Management for School Counselors

Support for school counselors as they support students, including resources, ideas and connection with fellow professionals. 


National Education Association Schools Crisis Guide

This guide provides resources, tools, recommendations, and evidence-based practices to incorporate school mental health best practices into school crisis plans.  

CDC's Considerations for Operating Schools During COVID-19

Resources for school administrators protect the health, safety, and well-being of students, teachers, staff, families, and community.


US Department of Education Practical Information on Crisis Planning with links to additional resources including A Complete Crisis Planning Guide for Schools and Communities.

Administrative and Crisis Team Threat Assessment

Facts, tips, and other resources on threat assessment. 

Michigan State Police - Office of School Safety

Information on Developing an Emergency Operations Plan, including a template, contact

USED Crisis Planning Guide


NASP School Safety and Crisis document
NASP PREPaRE 2nd Edition

The National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) is a professional association representing more than 25,000 school psychologists, graduate students, and related professionals throughout the United States and an additional 25 countries worldwide. NASP works to advance effective practices to improve students' learning, behavior, and mental health. Our vision is that all children and youth thrive in school, at home, and throughout life.

NASP Health Crisis Resources

These resources help schools and districts provide supports in the event of a health crisis. 

Preparing for Pandemic Illness: Guidelines for School Administrators and Crisis Response Teams

This guidance is based on USED and NASP curriculum to assist schools to work collaboratively and effectively with local and state health departments in order to limit the spread of disease and to provide safe learning environments. 

Preparing for Infectious Disease Epidemics: Tips for School Mental Health Professionals

Guidance for school professionals to help students and school staff cope with the mental health challenges and reduces traumatic stress.


Managing Strong Emotional Reactions to Traumatic Events: Tips for Families and Teachers

This .pdf document guides caregivers help young people manage their feelings by modeling healthy coping strategies and closely monitoring their own emotional state.

National Association of School Psychologists PREPaRE

The PREPaRE curriculum was developed by the National Association of School Psychologists to provide evidence-based resources and consultation related to school crisis prevention and response. There are costs associated with this curriculum.


National Child Trauma Stress Network

When a child feels intensely threatened by an event he or she is involved in or witnesses, we call that event a trauma. There is a range of traumatic events or trauma types to which children and adolescents can be exposed. The provided resources help identify and respond to multiple types of trauma.

Helping Traumatized Children Learn 

Based on evidence from brain research, child development, and actual classrooms, this road map for parents, schools, administrators, and policy makers shows concrete and feasible steps for making schools the life raft for children who otherwise may be misunderstood and abandoned by their community.

Trauma Sensitive Schools: Tips and Policy Recommendations

Promoting trauma-sensitive schools to positively impact all students, regardless of trauma history. Trauma-sensitive school approaches fit well within a Multi-Tiered System of Support (MTSS) framework.

CDC - Adverse Childhood Experiences

Learn more about preventing adverse childhood experiences in your community by assuring safe, stable, nurturing relationships and environments.

Understanding how Children and Adolescents Cope with Ongoing Trauma

Understanding how children and adolescents cope with trauma and the psychological stress associated with extended periods of feeling at-risk is critical to helping them manage their reactions.

Preventing Childhood Trauma Guidelines for Administration and Crisis Teams 

Develop a team of interdisciplinary professionals committed to supporting children who have been traumatized. The team should include members of the school crisis, safety, and mental health teams in order to facilitate the seamless delivery of prevention, preparedness, and intervention activities to reduce the likelihood of trauma.

Committee for Children: Webinar on Trauma-Sensitive Practices During COVID-19 

The COVID-19 threat has the possibility of intensifying a sense of distress for all students, but may particularly impact students who have experienced trauma. This webinar addresses how teachers and schools can integrate foundational trauma-sensitive practices into their online teaching plan and their interactions with students.

HelpGuide: Emotional and Psychological Trauma 

When bad things happen, it can take a while to get over the pain and feel safe again. But with these self-help strategies and support, you can speed up your recovery.

National Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Center

The world's leading research and educational center of excellence on PTSD and traumatic stress.

American School Counselor Association Webinar Series: Effective Crisis Trauma Response

Webinar will discuss scenarios to understand the depth of response and what is needed in the recovery phase of a traumatic event.


Help For Grieving Students cover
After a Loved One Dies cover

Sample Letter Templates for Notification of a Death

Supporting Grieving Students During a Pandemic

This resource was created to ensure that no child had to grieve alone—the free video-based and print resources can be used to meet this goal even during social distancing. This guidance will underscore some of the unique characteristics of grief during a pandemic and highlight resources for addressing these challenges.

Death and School Crisis

This module emphasizes the importance of prior planning to meet the bereavement needs in the context of a crisis, practical considerations in notifying the school community about the death, and strategies for identifying the students and staff most likely to need additional support.

Helping Children Cope with Grief

Parents, caregivers and educators wondering how they can help children cope with grief will find many answers to their questions in this guide.

Help for Grieving Students

School counselors, as well as other educators, need to be prepared to address grieving students’ needs – both inside and outside the school walls. 

Guidelines for Responding to a Death

These guidelines are designed to help school administrators, teachers, and crisis team members respond to the needs of students and staff after a loss has impacted the school environment.

Losing Someone: After a Loved One Dies – Parent Booklet

This guide reviews how children grieve and how parents and other caring adults can help them better understand and adjust to a death.

Guidelines for Responding to a Death by Suicide

These guidelines are designed to help school administrators, teachers, and crisis team members respond to the needs of students and staff after a suicide has impacted the school environment.

Psychological First Aid

Supporting your students in times of disaster, school crises, or emergencies can help students bounce back more quickly. 


The following hotlines may be helpful for students in crisis while not attending school due to COVID-19.
Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline
(800) 422-4453

Disaster Distress Helpline – SAMHSA
(800) 985-5990


Girls & Boys Town National Hotline
(310) 855-4673

National Center for Missing & Exploited Children
(800) 843-5678

National Domestic Violence Hotline
(800) 799-7233

National Parent Helpline
(855) 427-2736

National Runaway Safeline
(800) 786-2929

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
(800) 273-8255

Poison Control 
(800) 222-1222

Rape, Sexual Assault, Abuse and Incest National Network (RAINN)
(800) 656-4673

Crime Victims: 1-800-FYI-CALL (1-800-394-2255)