FINAL BILL REPORT
This analysis was prepared by non-partisan legislative staff for the use of legislative members in their deliberations. This analysis is not a part of the legislation nor does it constitute a statement of legislative intent.
C 84 L 19
Synopsis as Enacted
Brief Description: Concerning first responder agency notifications to schools regarding potential threats.
Sponsors: Senate Committee on Early Learning & K-12 Education (originally sponsored by Senators Padden, Wellman, Zeiger and Frockt).
Senate Committee on Early Learning & K-12 Education
House Committee on Public Safety
Background: Current law requires school districts to adopt and implement safe school plans. To the extent funds are available, school districts must annually review and update safe school plans.
School districts are encouraged to work with local emergency management agencies and other emergency responders to conduct one tabletop exercise, one functional exercise, and two full-scale exercises within a four-year period.
The 2018 supplemental budget included $722,000 for fiscal year 2019 to the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction to provide grants to educational service districts (ESDs) and school districts to develop or expand regional safety programs to address student safety. At a minimum, programs must:
implement a multi-tier threat assessment system;
develop a process for notifying schools, including private schools, of safety emergencies; and
make recommendations or implement appropriate safety technology consistent with regional need.
ESD 105 (Yakima) and ESD 114 (Bremerton) are the lead ESDs and received the bulk of this funding; however, each ESD received some funding.
Summary: Whenever a first responder agency notifies a school of a situation that may necessitate an evacuation or lockdown, the agency must determine if other schools in the vicinity, including private schools, are similarly threatened. The first responder agency must notify every other known school in the vicinity for which an evacuation or lockdown appears reasonably necessary to the agency's incident commander unless the agency is unable to notify schools due to duties directly tied to responding to the incident occurring.
A first responder agency and its officers, agents, and employees are not liable for any act, or failure to act, regarding this requirement unless they acted with willful disregard.
Votes on Final Passage:
July 28, 2019