Countywide Response to School Emergencies

The Big Five is a common emergency plan adopted by all 小蓝视频 school districts and law enforcement agencies. Created by 小蓝视频's Coalition for Safe Schools and Communities, it provides five immediate action responses in any given emergency: Shelter in Place; Drop, Cover, and Hold On; Secure Campus; Lockdown/Barricade; and Evacuation.

The Big Five has become the cornerstone of emergency response for 小蓝视频’s schools. Versions of The Big Five are available for administrators, school staff, and the community, as well as multiple resources for engaging school community members. 

Learn about The Big Five below and find resources for school administrators and teachers.

The Big Five Immediate Action Emergency Response Packets

The Big Five Community Packet (EnglishSpanishTraditional ChineseTagalog)

The Big Five Staff Packet

The Big Five Administrator Packet

Shelter in PlaceShelter in Place

Shelter in Place is implemented to isolate students and staff from the outdoor environment and prevent exposure to airborne contaminants or outside threats. It is appropriate for external chemical releases, fire in the community, hazardous material spills, unhealthy air quality outside, or dangerous wildlife on or near campus.

Drop, Cover, and Hold OnDrop, Cover, and Hold On

Drop, Cover, and Hold On is the immediate action taken in the event of an earthquake or explosion and protects students and staff from flying and falling debris. It is an appropriate action for earthquakes and explosions. Depending on the incident, it may be followed with Evacuation.

Secure CampusSecure Campus

Secure campus is implemented when a threat of violence or police action in the surrounding community requires precautionary measures to ensure school safety. This response is considered appropriate for a potential threat of violence in the surrounding community or law enforcement activity in the surrounding community.


Lockdown/Barricade is implemented when the imminent threat of violence or gunfire is identified on the campus or the school is directed to do so by law enforcement. During Lockdown/Barricade, students are to remain in designated classrooms or lockdown locations at all times. This response is considered appropriate for gunfire or a threat of extreme violence outside the classroom.


Evacuation is implemented when conditions make it unsafe to remain in the building. This action provides for the orderly movement of students and staff along prescribed routes from inside school buildings to a designated outside area of safety. This response is considered appropriate for bomb threats, chemical accidents, explosions or threats of explosions, fires, or earthquakes.


Want to Learn More?

Check out the following resources to learn more about The Big Five and how to prepare for – and recover from – emergency situations.

小蓝视频 Resources

The Big Five Overview (EnglishSpanish)
School Safety for Families Webpage

State Resources

California Department of Education

California Office of Emergency Services

California Office of Emergency Services

School Administrator Resources

Think-On-Your-Feet PeetThink-on-Your-Feet Peet

The Big Five is made engaging and easy to understand through the children's book, Think-on-Your-Feet Peet. This book acts as a great entry point to The Big Five in classroom settings without using active shooter drills, which may be traumatic for those involved.

Classroom Resources

Use the classroom resources below to help students learn The Big Five emergency protocols.

Think-on-Your-Feet Peet Digital Book:

Think-on-Your-Feet Peet Activity Book:

TK-3rd Grade:
Lesson PlanPowerPoint, PDF of Slides

4th-5th Grade:
Lesson PlanPowerPoint, PDF of Slides

Middle School:
Lesson PlanPowerPoint, PDF of Slides

High School:
Lesson PlanPowerPoint, PDF of Slides

Nancy Magee

小蓝视频 Superintendent of Schools


Phone: (650) 802-5554

Mason Henricks

Coordinator, School Safety and Risk Prevention


Phone: (650) 802-5434