Crisis Assistance Team
RESPOND • SUPPORT • ASSIST
CAT stands for Crisis Assistance Team. This services provided by this team help support our Strategic Direction Plan — To provide safe, supportive and vibrant learning environments by accessing resources effectively to support the emotional, social, academic, and physical needs of all students at all schools.
CRISIS ASSISTANCE TEAM FOCUS:
The district's Crisis Assistance Team has been established to assist in managing tragedies that have a significant impact on schools (i.e., student or staff deaths, critically ill or injured students/ staff, terminal illness, natural disasters, hostage or abduction situations. This team is designed to provide assistance to students and staff, preschool through high school. “Comprehensive efforts addressing crisis prevention and intervention are necessary to promote safe, supportive and effective schools” (Osher, Dwyer, Jimerson, & Brown, 2012).
CRISIS ASSISTANCE SERVICES:
- Meet with building administrator(s) and key staff to formulate an action plan.
- Support school staff.
- Facilitate staff meeting to provide information related to the crisis.
- Help teachers process information with students.
- Work with students individually or in groups.
- Be available for contact with parents.
- Provide helpful, factual information to parents.
CRISIS ASSISTANCE TEAM EXPERIENCE:
Our Crisis Assistance Team has been active for two decades. Members of the CAT have undergone specific training for assisting in crisis situations. The team meets on a monthly basis, participates in book studies focused on crisis response, practices tabletop exercises regularly, and has developed a general response plan to assist schools when called upon.
ROLE OF THE CRISIS ASSISTANCE TEAM:
The Crisis Assistance Team is a supportive service which can help schools assess, plan, and intervene in a crisis affecting staff and students. A planned, organized approach has been shown to be effective in reducing the emotional and social impact of a crisis. The CAT has specialized training to assist building Administrators In directing crisis resolution activities.