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BVUSD Safety Plan Updates & Resources for Families & Attendance

Posted Date: 1/05/24 (8:00 AM)


Dear Families,

As we prepare for a new year, I have two important messages to share. It's a lot of content to digest, so feel free to book mark this for later, if you're still enjoying some vacation.

#1 | The first message includes important reminders about attendance. Our attendance rates have continued to be lower than average this year. This is impacting our ability to fully serve students.

#2 | The second message includes safety information for families. We've been working hard to make important updates, and we're really proud of the work. 

Incidentally, this message was prepared last week, prior to learning of yesterday's school tragedy in Iowa. While a violent intruder scenario remains one of the scariest crises for our communities to consider, BVUSD is deeply committed to preventing and preparing for such tragedies. In light of recent events, I'd like to add a couple additional notes around our efforts to prevent and prepare for a school crisis:

Summer 2023 
  • BVUSD leadership spent the bulk of Summer 2023 reviewing and improving existing emergency response plans and prevention tools. This included: 
    • researching best practices and consulting with local experts
    • re-writing our existing plan to reflect current best practices, fill in gaps with additional tools, and integrate research-based protocols from several agencies
    • careful consideration of the various components to include evidence-based prevention, preparedness, and response scenarios
    • the development of a new communication plan with templates for various stages and contexts, a new threat assessment protocol, and training for restorative responses to student behavior challenges
    • submitting our plan for review and feedback to several experts and agencies
    • reorganizing the plan to be both comprehensive and user-friendly with quick summaries, and color-coded graphics
    • the development of new, user-friendly staff emergency response binders (to be distributed in January) 
Fall 2023
  • Since August, BVUSD staff has participated in:
    • comprehensive annual mandatory staff trainings
    • a review (and restocking of) of our emergency supply inventories
    • a substantial purchase of new supplies to allow our new plans to be fully operational
    • a review of staff roles for various scenarios (including the creation of new one-page 'Job Sheet' summaries for each role)
    • ongoing conversations about our response and opportunities to ask clarifying questions about our new plan 
    • monthly emergency drills

Winter 2024
  • Staff will receive new, user-friendly emergency response binders
  • Leadership is in the process of creating new emergency "Go-Kits." These supplies will hold all response materials and are organized by the type of emergency and assigned staff roles.
  • Thanks to generous support from some of our families, we have an entire day dedicated to this topic on our January 26th Professional Development day (no school for students). In partnership with local agencies, we have prepared an agenda that includes an Active Shooter seminar with SRPD, a Stop the Bleed training with Cal Fire, as well as a workshop designed to support emotional regulation. Together, these sessions are intended to support comprehensive preparedness in both our response to and prevention of a tragedy. I would like to express our sincere gratitude and great fortune for a couple members of our community who are helping making this possible: Mike Pietrelli, Trevor Galeazzi, and Mike Webb


One of the final pieces for our preparedness, is to acquire weatherproof and disaster-resistant storage containers for our emergency supplies.

If any of our families have access to a business that may be able to supply something substantial (like a small shipping container) for each campus, please reach out to our District Office asap. 

Thank you!


We've had a series of turbulent years, and it's easy to understand a decline in attendance. We're still trying to turn things around, and we're asking for help.

 While BVUSD isn't alone in this challenge, some of the impacts (especially those connected to funding) hit our district extra hard. 

Many resources are available on as part of our Attendance Framework, and key points are summarized below. 

Click the button above, or visit:

There is plenty of research to support the following impacts of attendance, and they are as true in kindergarten and elementary grades as they are in high school. 

 ✔  Engagement
Too many absences can make it hard for students to stay engaged, connected and learning.  

✔  Learning
Children who miss too much school in kindergarten have the lowest academic performance in first grade and are less likely to read well by third grade.

✔  Graduation & Drop-Out Rates
By 6th grade, absenteeism becomes the greatest indicator for who will graduate from high school.

✔  Relationships
Irregular attendance can disrupt social experiences. 

✔  Classrooms
Absences impact teacher plans, content coverage, and learning for all students.

Funding is not our primary concern, and low attendance rates are not our funding's only threat. That said, improving attendance is on of very few areas in which we can have an impact on funding; and funding has a great impact on our ability to fully meet student needs (e.g., class size, enrichment, counseling services, and a wide range of intervention programs.)

➼  Current BVUSD attendance rates have dropped to less than 92%
➼  Pre-COVID attendance was around 97%

➼  Each decline of 1% costs us over $100,000

$ Based on current BVUSD attendance rates, we are positioned to lose over $800,000 by the end of the school year

$ District costs are fixed based upon enrollment, but we're funded per attendance


Click the button above, or visit:


We are very excited to be sharing updated plans & resources. Our updated plans reflect a comprehensive process to research and integrate evidence-based practices in support of early intervention, staff training, and standardized emergency responses. 

All safety plans, protocols, tools, and community resources have been updated on the Safety Framework page of the Community Handbook we shared with families in August. Links to that page are provided below, followed by a summary of key content. 

Coalition for Safe Schools & Communities •  I Love U Guys Foundation • Community Matters
BVUSD leadership spent the bulk of Summer 2023 researching best practices and consulting with local experts. This led us to several impressive and evidence-based resources. Specifically, we discovered San Mateo's Coalition for Safe Schools & Communities (for standardized emergency responses) and the I Love You Guys Foundation (for Standard Reunification). We are excited to be the first District in Sonoma County to adopt much of this work!

To further support this work and our students, we connected with the local (but globally recognized) Community Matters program, for an "inside-out" approach to improving climate, safety, bullying, and social-emotional learning.

We are proud of these current versions of our work, and our integration of the evidence-based expertise from The Coalition for Safe Schools & Communities, I Love You Guys, and Community Matters

Here are a couple resources to help families prepare:


SoCo Alerts & PulsePoint are two great services to help community members stay informed during an emergency.  Find additional resources like an interactive fire incident map and Nixle at

 prepare for an emergency stay up to date during an emergency resources and assistance after

PulsePoint is a non-profit foundation connecting public safety agencies with citizens


BVUSD has adopted a Standard Reunification Method with researched-based protocols for a successful "reunification" of students their families after an unlikely, but possible school crisis.

Reunification is the least likely, but most complicated emergency response. We encourage families to familiarize themselves with key details. Of note, please review the Parent Handouts & Reunification Cards below.

Click the thumbnails below to download & view the PDFs.

Parent Handout
Parent Handout 
Reunification Cards (English) Reunification Cards (Spanish)


You can find all of our safety, support, and emergency resources on our website at: 

or by navigating to the resources as shown below: 

In Partnership,