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Student Safety

ISM recognizes that successful teaching and learning can only take place in a safe and healthy school environment. Thus, we expect the entire school community to prioritize health and safety.

Not only does ISM comply with all applicable health and safety laws, we go far beyond by working to continually understand and execute best practices in all health and safety areas. We recognize that it takes a collaborative effort of our staff, students, parents/guardians, campus visitors, and service providers to achieve this goal on a daily basis. 

We maintain vital partnerships with Monterey Peninsula Unified School District as our facility provider and charter authorizer; CharterSAFE, the joint powers authority we contract for insurance and risk management services; the City of Seaside police and fire departments; an expanding network of school district contacts overseeing health, safety, and risk management; and organizations providing valuable web-based and in-person training on a broad range of safety topics. The field of school safety is always evolving and by working together with these partners, ISM continues to deepen its knowledge and implementation of relevant safety practices. This has led to wide praise and recognition for our thoughtful and thorough safety planning and practices from these partners and other observers. 


Our Greatest Safety Asset

While strong safety procedures, practices, and equipment are absolutely essential, the greatest safety asset that a school can have in place is a vigilant community where every set of eyes focuses on the safety and wellbeing of every one every day. We have that! Our ISM community is made up of educators, parents, and students who clearly live our mission as “conscientious, compassionate, and responsible citizens” keeping an eye out for each other.


Health & Safety Committee

Our reputation for staying on top of student safety and wellbeing reflects the dedicated work of our Health & Safety Committee, co-chaired by Lisa Griffin Burns, operations & HR manager, and Lisa Wichael-Loomis, special programs coordinator. With outstanding staff involvement and incredible professional representation, such as Dr. Valerie Josephson, ISM board trustee, the committee oversees an exemplary process of continuous improvement. 

Over the years, the Health & Safety Committee's guidance and the work of the ISM community have put a long list of security, safety, and health measures in place including the following:

  • A perimeter fence with lockable gates, which routes all visitors through the front office
  • A visitor sign-in and badging system to make sure everyone on campus belongs and can be accounted for during an emergency or drill
  • Emergency response plans, developed in partnership with the Seaside Police and Fire Departments as our first responders
  • Off-campus evacuation locations coordinated with neighboring schools and churches
  • A regular schedule of drills in preparation for fires, lockdowns, and natural disasters, with a debrief dedicated to improvement following each drill
  • A highly effective working relationship with the City of Seaside police and fire departments
  • Frequent visits to campus by our police liaison officer, not in response to issues, rather to proactively help prevent them

Comprehensive Health & Safety Policy

Under the guidance of the Health & Safety Committee and outside advisors, ISM has adopted and implemented a comprehensive set of health and safety policies, practices, procedures, and plans. The Comprehensive Health & Safety Policy, adopted by the ISM Board of Trustees, serves as the underlying foundation and overarching framework for school health and safety.


Annual Safety Plan Update

The California Education Code requires that all school districts and county offices of education annually update a Comprehensive School Safety Plan (CSSP) by March 1. Though this provision does not apply to charter schools, ISM voluntarily complies out of the school's deep-seated commitment to student safety and wellbeing.
ISM's most recent CSSP review and update was submitted to the Monterey County Office of Education on Monday, February 5, 2017 and approved by the ISM Board of Trustees on Monday, February 12, 2017. The CSSP summary form references multiple safety and wellbeing related documents. Though we do not publish or share some due to sensitive or confidential content, we publish the majority of our safety documents on the ISM Official Documents website including the following:

Last updated February 21, 2017 by director