Message from the Safety Director


Preparing for a wide variety of emergencies is an important component of our on-going effort to provide effective safety and security for our students and staff.  Preparation for these emergencies involves year long practice through various drills at all of our schools. Every school in the Hatboro-Horsham School District conducts at least one emergency drill per month.  Some of the drills that we practice are, Lockdown, Lockout, Evacuation, and Shelter-In-Place.  Perhaps you are aware of what these types of drills entail, but if you are not, here is a brief explanation of each drill:

  • Lockdown:  Initiated when there is an immediate or imminent threat to the occupants of a school.  Lockdown isolates students and staff from the danger by severely restricting movement with-in the school.  Lockdown is used to prevent intruders from entering occupied areas of the school.  Lockdown is a "no one in, no one out" scenario.
  • Lockout:  Initiated to alert staff that there is police activity taking place near the school but not on school property.  All exterior doors and access points are secured.  The staff maintains an appropriate level of situational awareness and is prepared to implement additional emergency actions.  School activity with-in the building can proceed normally. 
  • Evacuation:  The orderly movement of students and staff from the school building to another area when conditions outside are safer than inside (i.e. fire drill)
  • Shelter-In-Place:  Implemented to isolate students and staff from the outdoor environment and provide greater protection from external airborne contaminants. This procedure includes closing and sealing doors, windows and vents and possibly shutting down the building's heating/air conditioning/ventilation system to prevent exposure to outside air (i.e hazardous material spill in the area of the building).  Activity with-in the building is not restricted and can proceed normally.

If an emergency occurred at one or more of our buildings, you will be notified via the School Messenger System.  If you do not receive a message, you can assume that no emergency is occurring at your child's school.  You will be given updates when possible and you will be notified via School Messenger when the event is over.  Please make sure that you are currently enrolled in School Messenger so that you can receive these important messages.  In an emergency, our full focus and efforts must be on the safety of our students and staff, and on the successful resolution of the emergency. With this in mind, Please do not come to or call the school.   I realize that the normal parental urge is to come to the aid of your child, but in an emergency situation at one of our schools, you will not be able to help and may even become a hindrance.  It is vital that, in an emergency, the district concentrates its resources towards the students and staff that are involved in the emergency.  If those resources have to be diverted towards concerned parents who have come to the school, then those resources are not being used fully towards the emergency at hand. The Hatboro-Horsham School district realizes the importance of good communication with all HHSD parents.  In the event of an emergency, you will be kept informed as much as possible via the School Messenger System.

Thank you for your cooperation.  As always, the safety of all of our students and staff is paramount.



Be safe


Rick Kerrigan


Director of Safety









Last Modified on July 15, 2015