Archive for the 'Safety Research' Category

Enjoy the amazing story of the making of the most honest book written about the school safety industrial complex! Hector Solis, producer of the riveting investigative truth Awareness Podcast,  interviewed author David Perrodin and gifted him a brilliantly-rendered episode titled: The Making of School of Errors. ABOUT SCHOOL OF ERRORS. School of Errors: Rethinking School Safety in America released on August 7, 2019. The book establishes another voice in the discussion of how to promote safe schools. It challenges the unchecked expansion of school fortification and questions the realized benefit of inter-agency collaboration during a sentinel event. School of Errors offers an alternative to traumatizing simulations by providing clear options for improving school safety by the empirically-proven effective measures of leakage detection and sensemaking. Dr. Perrodin restores the scientific method to school safety and clears a path through the media rhetoric fogging this vital topic. THE ARTICLE THAT BECAME A MANUSCRIPT. In 2015, an education journal published David's school safety article. Fortunately, the journal’s editor was friends with an editor at book publisher Rowman & Littlefield. Connections were made and, confident in his expertise and experience, David aimed to write a book that would peel away the rhetoric and deliver an empirically-based, and at times punchy, account of the forces shaping school safety in America. He submitted a book outline and was subsequently offered a book contract. SPEECH-LANGUAGE PATHOLOGY AND DE-CONSTRUCTING COMMUNICATION. Hector recognized how Dr. Perrodin’s university degrees and work in communicative disorders and speech-language pathology centered the de-construction of the communication process - breaking words into phonemes, or sounds, and carefully monitoring expressed communicative messages to ensure they aligned to how the recipient actually comprehended the message. This keen observation shed light upon David’s prioritization of communication systems, including 2-way radio systems and concise communications protocols, as being fundamental to safety. Clear messages. Conveying information. Checking for understanding. In the first pages of School of Errors, David writes about a time when he urged a colleague to assess his district’s communication systems before making a decision to spend money on surveillance cameras. MEMBER CHECKS RAISED THIS BOOK ABOVE OTHERS. First, this book is packed with short stories. You will NOT be bored by a textbook disguised with a fancy cover. The narratives ease you from page to page and the themes couple like railcars being systemically assembled on the tracks. David willingly submitted his manuscript to authentic experts and sought their candid feedback of this work. Dr. Paul Rapp, Dr. Seann Dikkers, Hector Solis, and others, calibrated the manuscript as it clawed forward through edits and proofs. The robust reference section and index are tributes to the depth of research and input from members of the safety community. Additionally, personal interviews with Katie Pechon and Kevin Sullivan bring forward vibrant stories from which the reader will better understand chaos and order as it manifests in the real world -- in ways that are NOT found in binders or flowcharts. WHAT WAS THE MOST SURPRISING THING THAT HAPPENED WHILE WRITING THE BOOK? David and his family were grocery shopping at 8PM on a Friday night. His phone rang and he answered. “I found it!” exclaimed a voice loud enough to be heard in the bread aisle. On the phone was Yvette from the New York City Planning Department. She helped fulfill David’s requests for NYC documents specific to the study of the 9/11/2001 attack on the city. FOLLOW DR. PERRODIN: Twitter @SafetyPhD and subscribe to The Safety Doc YouTube channel & Apple Podcasts. SAFETY DOC WEBSITE & BLOG: www.safetyphd.com The Safety Doc Podcast is hosted & produced by David Perrodin, PhD. ENDORSEMENTS. Opinions are those of the host & guests. The show adheres to nondiscrimination principles while seeking to bring forward productive discourse & debate on topics relevant to personal or institutional safety. LOOKING FOR DR. TIMOTHY LUDWIG, PHD? Dr. Perrodin’s “Safety Doc Podcast” negotiates school and community safety. To be informed about industrial safety, please contact Appalachian State University Professor Dr. Timothy Ludwig, PhD, at www.safety-doc.com This is episode 105. Thank you to Hector Solis for conducting the interview and producing this show!

Purchase Dr. Perrodin’s Book: Schools of Errors – Rethinking School Safety in America

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You can’t put a price tag on keeping schools safe – or can you? The $3 billion school safety industry is on a nonstop trajectory for both number of bills proposed and bills enacted to legislate, and sometimes fund, a staggering array of new mandates and unchecked block grants for school safety. CUSTOMER PERCEIVED VALUE. Customer perceived value (CPV) is the notion that the success of a product or service your business offers hinges on whether customers believe it can satisfy their wants and needs. Most of us can relate to this when purchasing a car. The salesperson will gauge what is important to us and tailor the pitch. If we are looking for a family vehicle, then safety and space are selling points. If it’s a commuter, then it’s fuel economy and ease to maneuver in traffic. WHEN THE PARENT IS THE CUSTOMER. Let’s be honest, school boards are entry-level political positions. Superintendents last 2-3 years in the role, and a teacher with 5 years in the same school is a seasoned veteran. The stats support all of that, but there’s something else going on. School boards and school leadership were entrusted to become informed and then to make the critical decisions about school operations. Today, the CPV model has changed. The parent is the customer and the school leaders and boards are dancing to their tune. When the perceived value is increased student safety, it’s practically unthinkable to assign a price tag to “peace of mind.” This isn’t a callous statement. But, with all the grant money being hurled at schools with minimal guidance and even less accountability, the vendors swoop with amazing presentations to sell schools unproven window dressings. And, it works as we are now convinced that (1) any device might contribute to making a school safer and (2) it’s savage to put a price limit on school safety. IMPLICATIONS FOR SCHOOLS. First, the current model of school safety spending isn’t sustainable. Just as we accept that there isn’t a price cap on school safety, couldn’t the argument be made to spend ten times what we are spending now for more bollards, armored busses, fences, guards – and, you know, the things they use at prisons? Second, school safety conferences have become overrun by fortification vendors. The list of speakers is FBI, CIA, FBI, and whatever. The scholars of the field don’t get to the stage as they know we can’t fortify our way to safety – and that message isn’t congruent with the $50,000 the conference is raking in from device-selling vendors and sponsors. The latest trend is to hand the breakout sessions over to the vendors. Instead of a breakout on learning about conducting focus groups with students, it’s now a presentation about window films to slow an intruder. What? And, once these practices are vetted, the weeds are difficult to remove and the lawn is just green and that’s fine, I suppose. ARE GOVERNMENT SAFETY GRANTS AN ATTEMPT TO MAINTAIN THE SOCIAL CONTRACT? The message from the heap of safety bills and plush grant funding is that to “solve” the problem of school safety, administrators, boards, teachers, parents and students must look external to the government. It’s called the transference dynamic and it was used as a political means to justify all kinds of spending to fortify the US from Russia in the early 1980s (read School of Errors – Rethinking School Safety in America).  To makes schools safer, we need to get the kids involved – and crack the Youth Code of Silence in which 81% of the time someone else, usually a peer, was aware ahead of time of a pending school attack. FOLLOW DR. PERRODIN: Twitter @SafetyPhD and subscribe to The Safety Doc YouTube channel & Apple Podcasts. SAFETY DOC WEBSITE & BLOG: www.safetyphd.com The Safety Doc Podcast is hosted & produced by David Perrodin, PhD. ENDORSEMENTS. Opinions are those of the host & guests. The show adheres to nondiscrimination principles while seeking to bring forward productive discourse & debate on topics relevant to personal or institutional safety. Email David: thesafetydoc@gmail.com LOOKING FOR DR. TIMOTHY LUDWIG, PHD? Dr. Perrodin’s “Safety Doc Podcast” negotiates school and community safety. To be informed about industrial safety, please contact Appalachian State University Professor Dr. Timothy Ludwig, PhD, at www.safety-doc.com This is episode 101.

 

Purchase Dr. Perrodin’s Book: Schools of Errors – Rethinking School Safety in America

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In 2011, I co-founded what would become one of the largest school-based positive behavior summits in the Midwest. As my partners and I crafted legal contracts with the conference center, vendors and presenters, we were introduced to the term “Force Majeure” which is very significant in Wisconsin in February. Ever since, I’ve considered force majeure as it relates to school safety – and that inevitably leads into chaos theory. WHAT IS FORCE MAJEURE? Force Majeure is French for “superior force”. Force majeure refers to a clause that is included in contracts to remove liability for natural and unavoidable catastrophes that interrupt the expected course of events and restrict participants from fulfilling obligations. In other words, if solar flare fried our electrical grid, we wouldn’t be on the hook to pay conference presenters their speaking fees as Tuesday’s conference wasn’t going happen as the communication, power and transportation structures largely left people with few options other than to stay in their homes or hoof it to the nearest supply depot. WAS 9/11 FORCE MAJEURE? Yes. New York, for example, hadn’t encountered a terrorist attack via commercial aircraft – ever! And, nobody had experienced all commercial planes grounded across the nation for days. If you couldn’t fly your shipment of XYZ from Boston to LA in 24 hours, as promised, then the force majeure clause would have been activated and you wouldn’t be held at fault for not fulfilling the contract. CAN FEMA DECLARE FORCE MAJEURE? I don’t think so. And, if FEMA has this ability, it hasn’t exercised it. But, it would be helpful for strengthening rescue forces during sentinel events, such as flooding. For example, in 2017, the nonprofit Cajun Navy Relief volunteered boats, trucks, food, manpower and other resources to rescue people from flooded areas. FEMA was largely a passive partner in this process – not overtly assisting Cajun Navy Relief in most instances, but also not a barrier to their interface into the government rescue system. This changed with Hurricane Florence in 2018 as FEMA was significantly less cooperative with nonprofits such as Triton Relief Group. If FEMA declared a state of force majeure, however, that act might clear the way for nonprofit rescue forces to play bigger roles, and in expedited fashion, with large scale rescues. WHAT DOES FORCE MAJEURE MEAN FOR SCHOOL SAFETY? This is a slippery interface. First, a declaration of force majeure might convey to some that the situation if insurmountable and they will simply surrender. On the other hand, force majeure can acknowledge that the state of similarity has officially transitioned into chaos – and actually embracing chaos can help people narrow down and make decisions that might save lives. FOLLOW DR. PERRODIN: Twitter @SafetyPhD and subscribe to The Safety Doc YouTube channel & Apple Podcasts. SAFETY DOC WEBSITE & BLOG: www.safetyphd.com The Safety Doc Podcast is hosted & produced by David Perrodin, PhD. ENDORSEMENTS. Opinions are those of the host & guests. The show adheres to nondiscrimination principles while seeking to bring forward productive discourse & debate on topics relevant to personal or institutional safety. Email David: thesafetydoc@gmail.com This is Episode #100.  LOOKING FOR DR. TIMOTHY LUDWIG, PHD? Dr. Perrodin’s “Safety Doc Podcast” negotiates school and community safety. To be informed about industrial safety, please contact Appalachian State University Professor Dr. Timothy Ludwig, PhD, at www.safety-doc.com

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As of May, 2019, only 43 of 50 states require schools to have safety plans and conduct safety drills (Education Commission of the States, 2019). When states mandate schools to have safety plans and conduct safety drills, it is the individual schools left to determine how they will design said plans and drills. In some states, the safety plan must be presented to a school board and submitted to the state Department of Justice. However, without templates and rubrics, there is littler inter-school reliability. What is a “good” safety plan or “effective” safety drill? Nobody knows. STANFORD PRISON EXPERIMENT WAS THE TIPPING POINT FOR PROTECTING HUMAN SUBJECTS. While the Stanford Prison Experiment was originally slated to last 14 days, it had to be stopped after just six due to what was happening to the student participants. The guards became abusive, and the prisoners began to show signs of extreme stress and anxiety. These were university students, assuming assigned roles, as part of an experiment that attempted to investigate the psychological effects of perceived power, focusing on the struggle between prisoners and prison officers. THE MELTDOWN. Similar to the infamous 1963 Milgram shock experiment, Stanford’s experiment flew off the rails as subjects in positions of power followed directives that seemingly brought pain or harm to recipients.  Were the subjects acting as prison guards cruel, despicable people? Probably not. But, they were in a university context and a professor was mingling among them. They probably assumed that some measures were in place to prevent harm to recipients - and simultaneously lacked awareness of the endorphin rush they received from exerting their will over others. IRB WAS FORMED. In 1974, universities collectively ratified the Institutional Review Board (IRB) process. The mandate of the IRB is to provide ethical and regulatory oversight of research that involves human subjects by: Protecting the rights, welfare and well-being of human research participants, recruited to participate in research conducted or supported by the university. Psychological and physical welfare are carefully considered and risks are identified and mitigated. WHAT IS COMMON RULE? In 1991, 16 federal agencies formally adopted the core of these regulations in a common Federal Policy for the Protection of Human Subjects also known as the "Common Rule" (Grady, 2015). I propose that adopting the IRB in K-12 settings will increase safety for all drill participants and, through the scientific model, increase efficacy of school safety drills. Common Rule applies, for example, to the Food and Drug Administration and clinical trials for medications. Common Rule was updated in 2019 with greater emphasis placed upon simplifying subject consent forms and clearly explaining potential consequences of participating in studies. IRB or COMMON RULE WOULD ELEVATE SCHOOL SAFETY DRILLS. Schools can establish their own standards for school safety plans and safety drills as long as they are complying with state mandates. In other words, schools IRB or COMMON RULE for these reasons: (1) Corral theatrical intruder drills that might traumatize or physically harm participants. This happens - just do a search on Google for “Intruder Drill Lawsuit”. Also, hyper-realistic drills are not the gold standard. If they were, we would conduct fire drills and tornado drills with similar drama. So, a committee of administrators, teachers, students, parents and board members review each proposed safety drill. (2) Each drill would have at least one learning objective. For example, “If a lockdown is announced during passing time, students would go to a safe location.” You can define “safe” per your site. Another example of a learning objective is, “Emergency responders will learn 3 techniques to engage with students with disabilities.” FOLLOW DR. PERRODIN: Twitter @SafetyPhD and subscribe to The Safety Doc YouTube channel & Apple Podcasts. SAFETY DOC WEBSITE & BLOG: www.safetyphd.com The Safety Doc Podcast is hosted & produced by David Perrodin, PhD. ENDORSEMENTS. Opinions are those of the host & guests. The show adheres to nondiscrimination principles while seeking to bring forward productive discourse & debate on topics relevant to personal or institutional safety. Email David: thesafetydoc@gmail.com LOOKING FOR DR. TIMOTHY LUDWIG, PHD? Dr. Perrodin’s “Safety Doc Podcast” negotiates school and community safety. To be informed about industrial safety, please contact Appalachian State University Professor Dr. Timothy Ludwig, PhD, at www.safety-doc.com

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Purchase Dr. Perrodin’s Book: Schools of Errors – Rethinking School Safety in America

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In 1978, an engineering student discovered a fatal structural flaw in New York City’s just-completed Citicorp Tower. What happened next wasn’t made public for nearly 20 years! NOTRE DAME CATHEDRAL FIRE LEAD CONTAMINATION. Dr. Perrodin juxtaposes the Citicorp Tower dilemma with the modern day unfolding crisis of massive lead contamination resultant of the April, 2019, Notre Dame Cathedral Fire. Per the Guardian (in an article by Angelique Chrisafis dated May 9th), “The Paris police statement on Thursday said that on the surface of pavements and gardens immediately adjoining the cathedral, lead levels were found to be very high: between 32 and 65 times the recommended limit by French health authorities. The areas closest to the cathedral are currently closed. Lead levels are also high within the cathedral itself.” Wow! Dr. Perrodin notes that similar “defiant” articles are surfacing that both bring awareness to the lead contamination and bluntly state the dire short and long term health risks associated with approximately 500,000 pounds of lead vaporized from the cathedral’s roof. Chrisafis’s article later notes, “But the French environmental campaign group Robin des Bois has warned that about 300 tonnes of lead from the cathedral’s roof and steeple had melted in the blaze. The cathedral has been reduced to the state of toxic waste,” the association said shortly after the fire, urging authorities to detoxify the tonnes of rubble, ash and wastewater produced in the disaster. WHAT’S REALLY HAPPENING IN PARIS? David states that Paris officials are aware of the breadth and depth of the lead contamination issue and that there’s likely a contingency plan being assembled to deal with thousands of people impacted by lead in their bodies secondary to the Notre Dame fallout. Dr. Perrodin wasn’t surprised that areas close to the cathedral weren’t registering high levels of lead contamination as he points out that the thick plume of lead-laden smoke probably carried the highest concentrations of lead 2-3 miles from the cathedral before cooling and the particles dusted over Paris. PARIS HAS A LOT TO LOSE. Yep, admission of widespread lead contamination would destroy tourism (the economic engine of Paris) and how do you tackle lead abatement in a population dense region? Chernobyl could be isolated - you can’t do the same with Paris. Also, imagine the litigation! What happens to the $billion in donations to rebuild NDC when thousands of people rack up medical bills due to complications from lead exposure? The public health crisis would be off the charts! THE CITICORP TOWER FLAW COULD HAVE KILLED 20,000 PEOPLE. Chief structural engineer, William LeMessurier, is largely credited as the person responsible for creating the wondrous Citicorp Tower in 1977. He was a thoughtful engineer and put the design of the tower through its paces with wind test scale simulations in the world’s best lab and worked the standard battery of industry calculations. The tower was built in an innovative way to accommodate an existing church. Hence, the pillars that supported the tower were moved from the corners to the middle of each wall. A strong central pillar, like a mushroom stem, also supported the structure. WHAT WAS WRONG. LeMessurier received a call from an engineering graduate student who was puzzled at how the structure could withstand perpendicular winds. LeMessurier listened and upon further study of the building and learning of some last-minute changes that included having tension braces bolted in place rather than welded in place, he was terrified to be informed that the tower would collapse with encountering a 70 MPH wind from a certain angle. The tower had a tuned dampening system that would offset such winds, but it was electrical - and if the power went out during a storm - well, lights out! WHAT CITICORP DID RIGHT. LeMessurier the Citicorp brass, insurance folks, NYC officials and the NYC welder’s union acted in unison to quickly fortify the tower. They also hired 3 weather agencies to rigorously track weather conditions and formulated a 10-block evacuation plan in case of high winds. WHAT CITICORP DID WRONG. The workers in the tower or in proximal structures were NOT made aware that the tower could collapse. The decision to withhold this information was done to prevent panic and massive economic disruption to the city. In addition, officials believed they could evacuate the zone in time. However, Lemessurier is most strongly criticized for not sharing the wind shear information with the greater engineering community for several years. How many buildings were constructed AFTER Citicorp Tower without calculating for the peculiar wind shear factors confirmed by Lemessurier? In a recorded 1997 presentation he gave at a university, Lemessurier implies that other tall buildings existed that were susceptible to failure due to similar wind dynamics. How many of those structures might have been built differently, or retrofitted, had Lemessurier’s knowledge immediately been shared with building engineers? IMPLICATIONS FOR SCHOOL SAFETY. Dr. Perrodin presents different scenarios that happen in schools. Each impacts the safety of the setting. How do the schools respond to each scenario if following what is unfolding in Paris or per the protocol established by the team that quietly mitigated the Citicorp flaw? FOLLOW DR. PERRODIN: Twitter @SafetyPhD and subscribe to The Safety Doc YouTube channel & Apple Podcasts. SAFETY DOC WEBSITE & BLOG: www.safetyphd.com The Safety Doc Podcast is hosted & produced by David Perrodin, PhD. ENDORSEMENTS. Opinions are those of the host & guests. The show adheres to nondiscrimination principles while seeking to bring forward productive discourse & debate on topics relevant to personal or institutional safety. Email David: thesafetydoc@gmail.com LOOKING FOR DR. TIMOTHY LUDWIG, PHD? Dr. Perrodin’s “Safety Doc Podcast” negotiates school and community safety. To be informed about industrial safety, please contact Appalachian State University Professor Dr. Timothy Ludwig, PhD, at www.safety-doc.com

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Dr. Perrodin notes curious inaccuracies of the Notre Dame Cathedral fire, the bizarre subsequent investigation, a looming detrimental Paris health hazard and wraps this entire discussion within a the philosophical shell of torus theory. INACCURACIES ABOUT THE CATHEDRAL FIRE. This episode was originally drafted as a platform to use the cathedral fire as an example of torus theory - as interpreted by Dr. Perrodin. However, numerous oddities presented surrounding the fire and, more notably, the unusual activities hours and days following the fire. Dr. Perrodin clearly states that he believes the fire was accidental. Nonetheless, the borderline conspiracy elements surface in the dearth of media coverage specific to the spire renovation and an acknowledgment of the public health ramifications of 500,000 pounds of lead on the roof that was mostly vaporized during the fire. It is known that lead contaminants have been detected proximal to the cathedral, but Dr. Perrodin questions the assessment of lead contamination and also lead abatement in and near the cathedral. Also, firefighters are observed without breathing masks or air filtration masks which seems very dangerous when fighting a fire with a massive component of lead. WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION’S POSITION ON THE ELEMENT LEAD. At high levels of exposure, lead attacks the brain and central nervous system to cause coma, convulsions and even death. ... There is no known safe blood lead concentration. Dr. Perrodin postulates that it might not even be an option to rebuild the cathedral due to contamination and that costs of lead abatement will certainly became public within the next 6 months. TORUS THEORY, SIMILARITY and the NOTRE DAME FIRE. David steps the audience through the steps that occurred as a typical day as Notre Dame Cathedral disintegrated into historic disaster. TYPICAL. Humans expect today to be similar to yesterday and also that tomorrow will be similar to today. This is known as torus theory and it was very much a contributing factor both the seemingly casual response to the initial fire alarm at Notre Dame as well as the billion dollars of donations that poured in within one day and earmarked to rebuild the cathedral. ACKNOWLEDGE. As we embrace routines and similarity, it took a while for it to “sink in” that Notre Dame was on fire and wouldn't open up in a "couple of weeks". The onsite fire inspectors had no choice but to become informed as they observed leaping flames. For the public, it took longer to grasp what was happening to this 850 structure not only from a physical perspective, but the gut feeling of how the desecrated structure impacted beliefs about permanence and Christianity. SHIFT FROM THE TORUS TO CHAOS. After the cathedral was cleared of occupants, everyone understood that the torus was shattered and the next several hours, days and years would negotiate chaos. Chaos, however, can be liberating - it simplifies things and also leaves us to “work the problem” as it unfolds. Hence, the line of people conveying artifacts from the cathedral and firefighters having to determine how to deploy over-matched assets to best prevent the destruction of the structure. ACCEPTANCE. As the flames consumed the attic structure, it became widely accepted that the cathedral had been rocketed into a state of chaos. Everyone realized it was failing and mourning displaced awe. ATTEMPT TO RESTORE SIMILARITY. President Macron seized the opportunity to proclaim that the cathedral would be rebuilt, better than before, within 5 years. He made this statement as firefighters were still poking around the structure to cool hot spots. It was a powerful declaration that served to help millions of people return to similarity and it also opened the flow of donations to restore the cathedral. Macron told people what they wanted to hear and not what they needed to hear. The reality was that it would take structural engineers weeks to assess the damage to the structure. Had the load-bearing stonework been substantially damaged, had toxic levels of lead been found throughout the structure? I mean, it might not have made sense to undertake the money pit of rebuilding a fatally-wounded landmark. This might still prove to be true. And, if so, what happens to the billion dollar donation fund? What if will cost a billion dollars JUST to address the toxic contamination of the site? 20 YEARS FROM NOW. Dr. Perrodin predicts that the health-related implications of the Notre Dame fire won’t be realized for at least a decade - similar to the disabling conditions that eventually afflicted workers removing debris at the World Trade Center complex in New York. What will be the long-term impacts of thousands of pounds of vaporized lead on Paris? FOLLOW DR. PERRODIN: Twitter @SafetyPhD and subscribe to The Safety Doc YouTube channel & Apple Podcasts. SAFETY DOC WEBSITE & BLOG: www.safetyphd.com The Safety Doc Podcast is hosted & produced by David Perrodin, PhD. ENDORSEMENTS. Opinions are those of the host & guests and do not reflect positions of The 405 Media or supporters of “The Safety Doc Podcast”. The show adheres to nondiscrimination principles while seeking to bring forward productive discourse & debate on topics relevant to personal or institutional safety. Email David: thesafetydoc@gmail.com LOOKING FOR DR. TIMOTHY LUDWIG, PHD? Dr. Perrodin’s “Safety Doc Podcast” negotiates school and community safety. To be informed about industrial safety, please contact Appalachian State University Professor Dr. Timothy Ludwig, PhD, at www.safety-doc.com

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Attorney James Sibley is a potent advocate for special needs students and their families fighting for fair treatment. In this episode of the Safety Doc Podcast, Attorney Sibley and host David Perrodin discuss the sprawling practice of limiting or exempting students with disabilities from school safety instruction, drills and access to threat reporting systems. James and David employ authentic stories that educators and parents will relate to in this vibrant discussion that is not about assigning blame and all about a more informed way for parents, educators and students to think about how to calibrate inclusive school safety. REASONS FOR EXEMPTING CHILDREN WITH SPECIAL NEEDS FROM SAFETY INSTRUCTION. Attorney Sibley explains that educators think they are somehow "protecting" students with special needs by limiting their participation in safety drills. Many of these students present unique challenges during emergency situations and they shouldn't just be included in regular safety planning, there should be specialized safety plans in place for them. And, for those plans to be successful there needs to be preparation and practice. Dr. Perrodin adds that the hyper-realistic design of contemporary school intruder drills also prompts educators and parents to limit students with special needs from exposure to these types of drills. However, the question also arises of the appropriateness of these drills for all students and staff. Has the threshold of “reasonable” safety drills been crossed? LAWS FOR STUDENT SAFETY INSTRUCTION: IDEA and ADA. Attorney Sibley describes two of the primary laws that impact student safety instruction. The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) is a piece of legislation that ensures the approximately 8 million students with a disability are provided a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) that is tailored to their individual needs. Students with disabilities that receive special education or related services have a plan developed by the school team and parents to meet the needs of the child. That plan can, and should, include specific instruction and supports to ensure the student’s safety is maintained during a crisis situation. The other significant piece of legislation addressed by Attorney Sibley is the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). People commonly think of this in terms of ramped entrances and accessible bathrooms. However, he brought awareness to Chapter 7 Addendum 2: The ADA and Emergency Shelters: Access for All in Emergencies and Disasters identifies that one of the government’s (including schools) primary responsibilities is to protect people during disasters and emergencies and to provide shelter that accommodates all persons, including people with disabilities. INCORRECT APPLICATION OF THE IEP PROCESS RELATIVE TO STUDENT SAFETY. First, you can’t do something in the IEP that would violate the ADA. The IEP has a portion that includes testing accommodations and Attorney Sibley mentioned that as teams discuss this section it is sometimes incorrectly broadened to include participation in safety instruction. Ultimately, students can’t be exempted from school safety instruction or drills for any reason. ASKING QUESTIONS IS THE WAY TO LEARN ABOUT A STUDENT’S SAFETY INSTRUCTION AT SCHOOL. Attorney Sibley believes much can be learned when parents adopt an inquiry-based approach to learning about their child’s school safety instruction and participation in drills. He gave the example of the following questions a parent might pose to school staff: “Are these drills designed to increase and enhance the safety on the campus? And if the answer is yes, is there some reason that you don’t want my child to be safe – as I want them to be safe and I assume you do, too.” WE UNDER-ESTIMATE THE POTENTIAL OF CHILDREN WITH DISABILITIES DURING CRISIS SITUATIONS. Dr. Perrodin gave accounts of educators that exempted children with special needs from drills only because they anticipated that they would not perform well during the drill. In fact, the student had never been afforded the opportunity to demonstrate competency in the drill. Attorney Sibley added a story of when he was a Scout Leader and the Scouts, including some with disabilities, needed to respond to a rapidly rising river. Although the Scouts hadn’t practiced for that specific scenario, they had practiced for unforeseen situations and also recognized a chain of command. They processed the flood without panic and, as Attorney Sibley underscores, students with special needs will surprise us with how well they can handle emergency situations.  FOLLOW DR. PERRODIN: Twitter @SafetyPhD and subscribe to The Safety Doc YouTube channel & Apple Podcasts. SAFETY DOC WEBSITE & BLOG: www.safetyphd.com The Safety Doc Podcast is hosted & produced by David Perrodin, PhD. ENDORSEMENTS. Opinions are those of the host & guests and do not reflect positions of The 405 Media or supporters of “The Safety Doc Podcast”. The show adheres to nondiscrimination principles while seeking to bring forward productive discourse & debate on topics relevant to personal or institutional safety. Email David: thesafetydoc@gmail.com LOOKING FOR DR. TIMOTHY LUDWIG, PHD? Dr. Perrodin’s “Safety Doc Podcast” negotiates school and community safety. To be informed about industrial safety, please contact Appalachian State University Professor Dr. Timothy Ludwig, PhD, at www.safety-doc.com Learn more about ADA Chapter 7 Addendum 2 at https://www.ada.gov/pcatoolkit/chap7shelterprog.pdf

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Purchase Dr. Perrodin’s Book: Schools of Errors – Rethinking School Safety in America

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I was attending a convention for school safety “experts” - I suppose. The presentations were a mix of pitches from field experts and product vendors. There wasn’t much new for me to learn and I found myself rather cynical and skeptical watching others present on school safety as everyone has a self-serving agenda. One of the veteran experts, someone I knew and tipped my hat to his work in both law enforcement and then in schools.  He begins his presentation with an amazing example of confirmation bias and headline research.  Headlines appear on the screen - the baited / incomplete headlines of school shootings and school violence.  A few seconds of audio from a newsreporter interrupted by another clip and another.  Headline after headline and faster and faster and more dramatic, rising background music for maybe 100 seconds. The screen goes dark. The presenter stands silent for an uncomfortable number of seconds. “That, ladies and gentlemen, is the urgency of school safety in America”, he said. I countered that this was not the state of school safety in America, but rather a perfect example of “headline research” manifesting in confirmation bias.  Yet, had that convention room been filled with parents, they would have demanded action – or fortification. Now. At any cost. WHAT IS CONFIRMATION BIAS. Per Wikipedia, confirmation bias is the tendency to search for, interpret, favor, and recall information in a way that confirms one's preexisting beliefs or hypotheses. It is a type of cognitive bias and a systematic error of inductive reasoning. People display this bias when they gather or remember information selectively, or when they interpret it in a biased way. The effect is stronger for emotionally charged issues and for deeply entrenched beliefs. People also tend to interpret ambiguous evidence as supporting their existing position. Biased search, interpretation and memory have been invoked to explain attitude polarization (when a disagreement becomes more extreme even though the different parties are exposed to the same evidence), belief perseverance (when beliefs persist after the evidence for them is shown to be false), the irrational primacy effect (a greater reliance on information encountered early in a series) and illusory correlation (when people falsely perceive an association between two events or situations). HOW CONFIRMATION BIAS IMPACTS SCHOOL SAFETY. Remember, people will seek information that supports their beliefs. I can recognize this immediately when I’m not a “fit” for a school district that has hired me as a consultant. When I deviate from their company line, the audience frowns or they get a worried look. Confirmation bias often assumes there’s been some type of research conducted - but I’ve found that’s just not accurate - it’s more like my colleague and his headlines. Confirmation bias will prevent systems from evolving.  New thinking is dismissed. THEY SAW A GAME; A CASE STUDY. “When the Dartmouth football team played Princeton in 1951, much controversy was generated over what actually took place during the game. Basically, there was disagreement between the two schools as to what had happened during the game. A questionnaire designed to get reactions to the game and to learn something of the climate of opinion was administered at each school and the same motion picture of the game was shown to a sample of undergraduate at each school, followed by another questionnnaire. Results indicate that the "game" was actually many different games and that each version of the events that transpired was just as "real" to a particular person as other versions were to other people.” (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved) Hastorf, A. H., & Cantril, H. (1954). They saw a game; a case study. The Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology, 49(1), 129-134. FOLLOW DR. PERRODIN: Twitter @SafetyPhD and subscribe to The Safety Doc YouTube channel & Apple Podcasts. SAFETY DOC WEBSITE & BLOG: www.safetyphd.com The Safety Doc Podcast is hosted & produced by David Perrodin, PhD. ENDORSEMENTS. Opinions are those of the host & guests and do not reflect positions of The 405 Media or supporters of “The Safety Doc Podcast”. The show adheres to nondiscrimination principles while seeking to bring forward  productive discourse & debate on topics relevant to personal or institutional safety. Email David: thesafetydoc@gmail.com LOOKING FOR DR. TIMOTHY LUDWIG, PHD? Dr. Perrodin’s “Safety Doc Podcast” negotiates school and community safety. To be informed about industrial safety, please contact Appalachian State University Professor Dr. Timothy Ludwig, PhD, at www.safety-doc.com

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Schools are exempting students with disabilities from participating in safety instruction and safety drills. These misplaced pardons are enabled via an incorrect application of the Individualized Education Plan (IEP)  process or a district-generated parent “opt-out” form. First, let’s be clear that it is illegal to exempt students from mandated fire drills. However, the practice is sprawling, unchecked and not enforced. Dr. Perrodin predicts deadly consequences from “protecting” children with special needs from receiving proper safety instruction. ANECDOTES. David kickstarts this episode by noting he is donning a beanie and insulated jacket as the basement of his North Star Studio was barely pushing the thermometer to 54 degrees Fahrenheit. Worse yet, the evening temperature would dip to minus ten degrees - a bit brisk for March. He shuffles through a few thoughts on his mind including: Why aren’t windshield’s more durable; How his home town issued a rare decree liberating residents from shoveling their sidewalks for the rest of winter; Why is it that people forget the blatant racism of Dr. Seuss’ cartoons during World War II; and looking ahead to the August 10th release of his book School of Errors - Rethinking School Safety in America. THE PROBLEM WITH EXEMPTING STUDENTS FROM SAFETY DRILLS: There are at least 10 million school-age children with disabilities in America and they aren’t receiving the same quality of safety instruction as their non-disabled peers. Per disability rights attorney James Sibley, “It is amazing how schools think that "sparing" special ed students from participation in fire drills active shooter drills and the like is showing them some sort of kindness. Many disabled students present special challenges during emergency situations and they shouldn't just be included in regular safety planning, there should be specialized safety plans in place for them. And, for those plans to be successful there needs to be preparation and practice.” Students must be provided skills that will generalize to home, stores or trips.  And, these skills must be resilient and reliable as the student exits school and enters the post-secondary setting. WHAT THE RESEARCH TELLS US ABOUT STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES AND SCHOOL SAFETY. Davis, Alicia & Gast, David. (1998). Social safety for young children: A review of the literature on safety skills instruction. Topics in Early Childhood Special Education. 18. 222-234. “Young children in today's society may find themselves in situations that require appropriate action in order to avoid dire consequences, such as injury of death. These situations may be the result of contact with objects in the physical environment action in order to avoid dire consequences, such as injury or death. such as guns, knives, or toxins. In other cases, children may be faced with confronting dangers in the social environment, such as avoiding the lures of strangers or responding to the abuse or neglect of a caregiver. Although safety education programs are implemented frequently in school settings, few research studies have systematically evaluated the methodology for teaching safety skills to young children.” Dr. Perrodin praised this study and also noted it was perhaps the best available on school safety instruction although it was done more than 2 decades ago. He pointed out that the study urged future research not be conducted in a group style, but individualized, and that it was critical to conduct “in vivo” data gathering - or to observe the child in various natural settings including school. FOLLOW DR. PERRODIN: Twitter @SafetyPhD and subscribe to The Safety Doc YouTube channel & Apple Podcasts. SAFETY DOC WEBSITE & BLOG: www.safetyphd.com The Safety Doc Podcast is hosted & produced by David Perrodin, PhD. ENDORSEMENTS. Opinions are those of the host & guests and do not reflect positions of The 405 Media or supporters of “The Safety Doc Podcast”. The show adheres to nondiscrimination principles while seeking to bring forward  productive discourse & debate on topics relevant to personal or institutional safety. Email David: thesafetydoc@gmail.com LOOKING FOR DR. TIMOTHY LUDWIG, PHD? Dr. Perrodin’s “Safety Doc Podcast” negotiates school and community safety. To be informed about industrial safety, please contact Appalachian State University Professor Dr. Timothy Ludwig, PhD, at www.safety-doc.com

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Giles Rhys Jones, Chief Marketing Officer for what3words, was interviewed for this episode of The Safety Doc Podcast. Dr. Perrodin contacted Giles after recently learning about what3words and instantly realizing its potential to recast swaths of school safety protocols. Giles and David discuss how w3w has interfaced with, and improved, rescue platforms and the potential ways the system might benefits schools. With 55 million students attending school daily in the  United States, w3w could immediately have a profound impact on improving school safety. Giles shares the fun story of a comparison of two persons assigned to deliver packages to addresses. One was provided traditional mapping options and the other with what3words. The person with w3w not only delivered the packages faster, and without having to seek clarifying directions, but also was happier with the activity! WHAT IS WHAT3WORDS? what3words (yes, all small letters) is a really simple way to talk about location as the company’s geospatial engineering team divided the world into a grid of 3m x 3m squares and assigned each one a unique 3 word address. It means anyone can accurately find any location and share it more quickly, easily and with less ambiguity than any other system. The service can be used via the free mobile app or online map. It can also be built into any other app, platform or website, with just a few lines of code. You might not be aware of the software, but it’s already integrated into several everyday platforms. For instance, car navigation systems are shifting to the precision of what3words. MERCEDES-BENZ USES W3W IN ITS VEHICLES. Mercedes-Benz is the first car company to integrate what3words into its in-car navigation systems. Drivers with compatible models can now say or type in a 3 word address to get directions to a precise 3m x 3m location, anywhere in the world. The adoption of what3words shows the company’s commitment to a premium and intuitive customer experience and sees Mercedes-Benz leading the way in destination input. SOLVING AN INDUSTRY-WIDE PROBLEM. In a recent survey of new car owners, JD Power found that car navigation systems being difficult to use and inaccurate is one of the most frequently reported problems, along with voice recognition issues. The automotive industry has struggled to improve these features, and a significant reason is that the world’s street addressing systems are incompatible with modern navigation needs, and especially voice input.‘Street addresses were just not built for voice input’ says Chris Sheldrick, CEO and co-founder of what3words. ‘15 Ammanford Road and 50 Ammanford Road are hard for a voice system to distinguish between, and many road names aren’t unique. There are 14 different Church Roads in London, and 632 Juarez streets in Mexico City. Street addresses can also be difficult to pronounce correctly. The town of Godmanchester, is actually pronounced ‘Gumster’. Mercedes-Benz is known for innovation, so it’s no surprise to us that it is the first automotive company to integrate our system into their vehicles’. SCHOOL SAFETY AND 3-WORD ADDRESSES. David identified several benefits that what3words would bring to existing school safety practices. The first is the ability to map an entire campus. If a student is hiding in unfamiliar area of a campus due to an intruder, that student could use the w3w app to convey his or her specific location to emergency responders. Dr. Perrodin’s second point is carried forward from his previous podcast in that what3words solves the age-old problem of what to do if an evacuation site or re-unification site is not available due to a myriad of reasons, including a larger perimeter established by law enforcement that encompasses those pre-determined locations. W3W efficiently allows for sharing of the evacuation or re-unification site as part of “working the problem” by authorities. It prevents people from locking in on a sub-optimal outcome of heading to a location that might not even be available as dictated by the dynamic context and situation. FOLLOW DR. PERRODIN: Twitter @SafetyPhD and subscribe to The Safety Doc YouTube channel & Apple Podcasts. SAFETY DOC WEBSITE & BLOG: www.safetyphd.com The Safety Doc Podcast is hosted & produced by David Perrodin, PhD. ENDORSEMENTS. Opinions are those of the host & guests and do not reflect positions of The 405 Media or supporters of “The Safety Doc Podcast”. The show adheres to nondiscrimination principles while seeking to bring forward  productive discourse & debate on topics relevant to personal or institutional safety. Email David: thesafetydoc@gmail.com LOOKING FOR DR.  TIMOTHY LUDWIG, PHD? Dr. Perrodin’s “Safety Doc Podcast” negotiates school and community safety. To be informed about industrial safety, please contact Appalachian State University Professor Dr. Timothy Ludwig, PhD, at www.safety-doc.com Learn more about what3words at https://what3words.com/

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