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Sarah Daignault Executive Director, NBOA Mohonk Conference May 3, 2007. Being Prepared: Disaster and Crisis Planning. Why are you here today?. Pandemic Info. Why Plan?. Disasters and Crises are a part of human history

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Sarah daignault executive director nboa mohonk conference may 3 2007

Sarah Daignault

Executive Director, NBOA

Mohonk Conference

May 3, 2007

Being Prepared: Disaster and Crisis Planning

Why Plan?

  • Disasters and Crises are a part of human history

  • Planning will allow for better response, even though you can’t plan for every contingency

  • Planning can be adapted to fit other disaster scenarios

  • Once a disaster hits, there is no time to plan

How many plans
How Many Plans?

  • By type of Disaster

    • Fire

    • Flood

    • Pestilence

  • By type of Response

    • Evacuation of Buildings

    • Lockdown

    • Evacuation of Campus

Assess the risks for your school
Assess the risks for your school







NBOA Disaster Planning Experience

  • Institute for Advanced Financial Management held in October 2006

  • 25 business officers and 9 experts worked through a pandemic flu scenario

  • Created outline of a disaster plan for independent schools

NBOA Disaster Planning

  • Breakout Groups Focused on:

    • Business Operations and Governance

    • Employee Issues

    • Facilities

    • Students and Education

Business Operations and Governance

  • Risk Management/Crisis Management Team

  • Enrollment Contracts

    • Review now, with your culture in mind

    • Keep it flexible

  • Cash Flow & Institutional Relationships

    • How much cash required for critical needs, and how much do you have at lowest point?

    • Are bank and payroll provider prepared?

Business Operations and Governance

  • Outside Service Providers

    • Have they made adequate plans?

    • Look for backups and cooperative options.

  • Technology & Redundant Communications

    • Arrange for backup or remote web-hosting.

    • Arrange for remote access to your system and to bank and payroll providers.

  • Automated Communications to Families

Business Operations and Governance

  • Business Continuity

    • Identify essential functions

    • Cross-train staff

    • List of passwords, important websites, etc.

  • Plan for Shutting Down Facility

    • Disposal of perishable goods

    • Maintenance issues - how to keep pipes from freezing, etc.

Employee Issues

  • Employment Contracts

    • At will language

    • Don’t define school year - make it flexible

  • Leave Policies

    • Standard policy that allows flexibility

    • Return to work guidelines

    • Work from home guidelines

Employee Issues

  • Ability to Continue Salaries and Benefits

    • Work with faculty to determine best course of action

    • Coordination of benefits, COBRA, etc.

  • Emotional/Psychological Toll

    • People will lose loved ones

    • Acknowledge losses in keeping with your school’s culture


  • Evacuation Plans (particularly for boarding)

    • How will you get students home?

    • If they can’t go home, where will they stay?

  • Proper Hygiene

    • Constant hand washing

    • Sneeze and cough etiquette

    • Stay home if you’re sick!!!


  • Stockpiling

    • Need1000 calories and 2 gallons of water, per person per day

  • Community Use of Facilities

    • Check with local emergency management officials - might be planning to use your school

    • Work with them - what are their priorities and what might your school offer?


  • Physical Security

    • Hope for the best, expect the worst

    • To what extent are you willing to protect your assets?

  • Isolation, Quarantine, Morgue

    • Separate those who may be sick and those who are, and plan for a place to hold the dead

  • If you evacuate, plan for the animals.

Students and Education

  • Continuing education during closure

    • Assess ability to offer e-learning

    • Faculty to create 3 weeks’ worth of lessons

  • Effect of long-term closure (college placement, lost credits, etc.)

  • Communications plan to parents

  • Deep emergency contact list

Vocabulary lesson
Vocabulary Lesson

  • Pandemic

  • Mutation

  • Reassortment

  • H5N1

  • U and W shaped mortality curves

  • Social Distancing

What is a Pandemic?

  • An epidemic (outbreak of infectious disease) that spreads across a wide geographic region or the world

  • According to the WHO, a pandemic exists when:

    • there is the emergence of a disease new to the population

    • the agent infects humans, causing serious illness

    • the agent spreads easily and sustainably among humans

Recent Epidemics

  • AIDS

  • Ebola

  • SARS

  • Monkey pox

  • Bird flu

Seasonal vs. Pandemic Flu

  • Seasonal influenza

    • Peaks December thru March in U.S.

    • 36,000 deaths/200,000 hospitalizations

    • Frail, elderly and very young – U shaped distribution

  • Pandemic influenza

    • No seasonal preference

    • Comes in waves, lasting a year or more

    • Millions of deaths

Pandemic Flu History

  • Ten recorded over past 300 years

    • 10-49 years between events, with an average of 24 years between events

    • No predictable pattern

  • Three in the 20th century

    • 1918-20 – mutation event with markers similar to those found in birds

    • 1957-58 – reassortment event

    • 1967-68 – reassortment event

Mortality Rates

  • 1918 Spanish Flu

    • 20-40 million deaths worldwide

    • 675,000 deaths in U.S.

  • 1957 Asian Flu

    • 1-4 million deaths worldwide

    • 70,000 deaths in U.S.

  • 1968 Hong Kong Flu

    • 1-4 million deaths worldwide

    • 34,000 deaths in U.S.

Why the Concern About H5N1?

  • Highly lethal virus that has resisted eradication efforts (culling of birds)

  • Crossed species, infecting 49 animal species beyond birds, including humans

  • Limited human-to-human transmission has occurred

  • Human infections result in rapid deterioration and high mortality rates (50%, most of those healthy young adults)

Similarities to 1918 Pandemic

  • High mortality rate

    • Appears to have W shaped mortality curve

  • Has the same protein tag

    • NS1 protein found in H1N1 (1918 Spanish flu) and H5N1 only ones alike out of 169 viruses

    • May explain the events leading to respiratory failure and death

WHO Pandemic Stages

  • Phase 1 - Influenza virus subtype may be present in animals, risk of human infection low

  • Phase 2 - Influenza virus subtype may be present in animals, risk of human infection substantial

  • Phase 3 - Cases of human infection reported, no human-to-human transmission

  • Phase 4 - Small clusters of limited human-to human transmission

  • Phase 5 - Larger clusters of human infection

  • Phase 6 - Increased and sustained human infection

Public Health Challenges

  • Short incubation period (2-17 days)

  • Virus can survive on surfaces for several days

  • People may be infectious days before symptoms are evident

  • Droplet infection (sneezing/coughing)

Likely Government Actions

  • Isolation of the sick

  • Quarantine of the exposed

  • Protective sequestration

    • Isolating a community before illness enters

  • Social Distancing

    • Actions taken to discourage close social contact between individuals

Social Distancing

  • No group gatherings (classes, worship services, athletic events, concerts)

  • Risky to use public transportation - people may defer travel or it may be cancelled

  • People can work alone in spaces, drive in their own cars

Social Distancing

  • Maintain working distances of 4-6 feet

  • Do not share equipment (computers, telephones)

  • Meet by phone or video conferencing, avoid face-to-face meetings


Workplace/Classroom Social Density



7.8 feet

Elementary Schools

16.2 feet

11.7 feet

3.9 feet

School Closures

  • Perceived risk will influence behavior

    • Will teachers and students show up?

    • What level of absenteeism will force closure?

  • Pulling the trigger early may help delay outbreak and diminish the overall number of cases

  • Issues with calling it early

    • Social disruption

    • Child care issues

    • Workforce issues


  • Personal




  • Institutional