After consulting with members of law enforcement, here is a protocol I’m suggesting to my child’s school district. I’m calling it The SPECTRUM Alert for Schools. The important thing to remember is that this alert/code will necessarily look different for each school. To be effective, it must be planned by individual schools based upon their location, size, design, proximity to water, etc. The SPECTRUM Alert is not a ready-made plan, but a roadmap for designing one .
S (Search grid) In conjunction with law
enforcement, the school and surrounding community should be mapped out on a
search grid. If the school is fenced in, there should be a perimeter walk to
determine any areas vulnerable to elopement. From there, the grid should expand
outward a mile or two, taking into account any and all bodies of water,
dangerous intersections, train stations, parks, playgrounds, etc. School
personnel not directly supervising students should already know and have
practiced reporting to their assigned search areas. Note: Water should always be
searched first. No matter what.