Emergencies hit schools at the most inopportune times and can take many forms. From severe weather to responding to a behavioral health crisis, being prepared with a plan that has been created by your school’s team and local partners, approved by your trustees, and practiced by your school community is vital to increasing student and staff safety.  Emergency Operations Plans (EOPs) provide guidance and practical solutions on how to prepare for, respond to, and recover from emergency situations. This planning process helps schools minimize injuries and property damage during an incident, and expedites the recovery process following an incident.

The resources, tools, and professional development opportunities included on the web pages below are designed to help schools prepare for and respond to emergency situations.  

Current Montana law regarding emergency planning in schools: MCA 20-1-401   

COVID-19 Guidance and Tools 

Please see the OPI's Safety and Student Support site for more information. 

The videos below provide information for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) about the spread of COVID-19 among school-aged children and steps schools can take to mitigate the spread. The video also walks through tools schools can use to guide decision making about in-person learning. You can view the full video here and access the video transcript here.  

Tools and Resources: 

New School Safety Resources

Strategies for Promoting Educator and Student Safety and Wellness During Online Learning: Information on available resources and strategies schools can implement to promote safety and wellness during online learning

Ten Essential Actions for Improving School Safety: Steps every school can take to improve school safety and links to additional resources. To learn more about the 10 Essential Actions to Improve School Safety, watch this video: 

New Technical Assistance Opportunity

The Office of Public Instruction has partnered with the Salish Kootenai College Emergency Services Academy to support schools in their efforts to understand, manage, and develop emergency operations plans unique to their schools and communities. If you are interested in receiving technical assistance with your emergency operational planning, please reach out to Michele Henson, School Safety Program Manager at OPI. This technical assistance could include topics relating to COVID-19 processes outlined in the OPI’s Reopening Guidance. This resource is provided to you at no cost to the school or school district.


Safety Resources

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Michele Henson, School Safety Program Manager, 406-595-1058

Holly Mook, Coordinated School Health Unit Director, 406-444-0773