Classroom Emergency Preparedness Tips for Teachers


A disaster or emergency can happen at any time. As teachers prepare their classroom for the new school year, the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES) encourages teachers, staff, parents and guardians to think ahead about emergency preparedness.


Talk to your students about your school’s disaster/emergency plan.

  • Have a conversation with your students about what an emergency could be and how to be safe. Try introducing the topic to young students through pictures and activities.
  • Be familiar with your school’s emergency plan and learn where you can evacuate your students safely if needed.
  • Teach your students how to properly shelter in place and how to take cover.
  • Practice your plan before an emergency so everyone knows what do if a disaster occurs.
  • Talk to parents/guardians about your school’s emergency preparedness plans and encourage at-home preparedness planning.
  • Ensure your student’s emergency contact information is up-to-date and they know who their emergency contact person is.

Make an individual disaster/emergency plan for students with access and functional needs.

Create an individual disaster/emergency plan for all students with disabilities that may need extra assistance in an emergency. Consider the following needs:

  • Notification of an emergency and communication
  • Accessible evacuation routes
  • Personal care assistance and supervision
  • Shelter
  • Medication and medical protocols

Build an emergency kit with essential supplies. Here are a few items to consider:

  • Medicines
  • First aid kit
  • Bottled water and non-perishable food
  • Local maps
  • Flashlights and extra batteries
  • Consider adding additional items based on your student’s needs.

Did you know all public employees, including school district personnel are considered an essential worker and a disaster service worker? Watch the video below to learn about what this means for you:



Remember, your preparedness and response is critical for your class’s safety. If you have questions about what to do during an emergency, talk with your school’s administration. Encourage students, parents and guardians to ask questions to ensure everyone understands the plan.