Black Gold School Division-wide Emergency Alert Test to take place November 18
Black Gold School Division will be testing its emergency alert notifications using our student information system contacts on Monday, November 18, 2019 at 10:30 a.m.
The test is meant to help identify any gaps in the system and to bring awareness to our emergency notification process.
During an emergency, our FIRST PRIORITY is to protect students and staff. Next, once it is safe and we are able, we will do everything in our power to keep those in affected areas informed through our emergency notification system.
Parents/Guardians will receive test alerts on their cell phone, phone and email. The Division will also be testing its community hotline, web and social media alerts.
The types of emergency alerts being tested are:
- School Messenger
In an emergency, SchoolMessenger will contact all phone numbers and email addresses families have provided, using communication classified as “emergency”.
If you have opted-in for text messaging, we will also contact you using that method.
It is important to note after an emergency is resolved, further notifications could be classified as “general”. Therefore, if you have not selected a contact method for general notifications, you may not receive those updates.
- Web Alerts
Test alerts will appear on the Division website (blackgold.ca) or your child’s individual school’s website.
- Community Hotline
Test alerts will be recorded to the community hotline. During an emergency parents may contact the community hotline and receive updates as information becomes available by phoning: 780.979.0980.
In an actual emergency, do NOT contact the school or your child’s cellphone. Phone systems need to remain available for handling the actual emergency. Overloading the system may prevent the school from communicating with first responders. Calling your child’s cell phone during an emergency may be putting them at higher risk by disclosing their location or drawing attention to them during a lock-down.
- Division Social Media Accounts
Test alerts will appear on the Division’s social media channels.
Depending on the emergency, the Division may use its Facebook and Twitter social media channels, as a secondary broadcast method, to send communication out to families and to reach a larger audience.
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What will the test alerts look and sound like?
When the test takes place, Black Gold School Division contacts will hear/read messages that state:
“This is a TEST of the Black Gold School Division emergency notification system. This is ONLY a TEST. If this had been an actual emergency or threat, you would now hear/read instructions that would help guide you to protect yourself and your family. For further information on our Hour Zero Emergency Response Program go to blackgold.ca. This is ONLY a TEST, no action is required.”
“This is a TEST of the BGSD emergency notification system, no action is required. For information on our Hour Zero Emergency Response Program go to blackgold.ca.”
What if I don’t receive the notifications?
To ensure you receive alerts, your contact information must be kept up-to-date in PowerSchool. Please contact your school with any changes to your contact information.
In order to receive SMS (text) messages, you must have opted-in for text messaging in your SchoolMessenger preferences.
Viewing Your School Messenger Preferences
From your PowerSchool Parent Portal, click on “SchoolMessenger” at the bottom of the left-hand menu. Using the top menu tab, select “My Message Preferences” to view your preferences.