Web Content Viewer
Actions

Emergency Management Tests (EMT) & Exercises

IMPORTANT NOTE: The EMT requirements discussed on this page are a separate requirement from the reporting of your school’s evacuation drills as mandated by the State Fire Marshall’s Office (SFMO). For more information on the SFMO drill requirements, please refer to the Record of Emergency Evacuation Drills- Instructions found on the SFMO’s website.

Emergency preparedness and response exercises provide substantial value to schools of all sizes. Hazards and threats are applicable to all schools. While some schools may be at low risk of encountering a threat, no school is actually immune to it.

Ohio Revised Code 5502.262 requires school districts to conduct an Emergency Management Test (EMT) each calendar year, between January 1st and December 31st. The term EMT, as addressed in the statute, is used solely in the school safety realm. An EMT is equivalent to an “Emergency Management Exercise”, a term frequently used by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and emergency responders nation-wide. EMTs are designed to test your school’s “response” procedures as outlined in your Emergency Operations Plan (EOP).

Exercises are a great way to test your school’s capabilities and for staff members to become familiar with their roles and responsibilities in the event of an emergency.  As stated in Ohio Administrative Code 4501: 5-1-01, school administrators shall prepare and conduct at least one (1) annual EMT each calendar year. EMTs shall meet the following requirements:

  • Be a scheduled event; no actual emergency shall constitute as a test/exercise, even if an after-action report is produced;
  • The type of test shall be a tabletop, functional, or full-scale exercise, each type being used once every three (3) years;
  • The test shall include at least one (1) threat/hazard identified in the threat/hazard analysis portions of the EOP;
  • The test shall include at least one (1) functional content area (also known as “response procedures”); and
  • The test shall include at least one (1) representative from any of the following: law enforcement, fire, emergency medical services (EMS), emergency management agency (EMA) or behavioral health.
  • Within 30 days of completion of the exercise, schools must complete an EMT After-Action Report using the School Safety Plans Portal. The Ohio School Safety Center (OSSC) encourages schools to utilize the EMT Data Collection Worksheet as it allows schools to document critical elements of the exercise prior to entering it into the Portal.  For step-by-step instructions on how to complete your after-action report, please see our EMT After-Action Report: Step-by-Step Instructions guide.

The OSSC encourages all schools to invite local first responders to participate in the planning and execution of the exercises. Student participation is not mandatory.

Exercise Organization: Roles & Responsibilities

Exercises are the best way to prepare schools to respond effectively to an emergency. Exercises should be designed to encourage collaboration between team members and help them understand their roles and responsibilities. This section identifies some of the most common roles carried out in an exercise and the responsibilities for each role.

Controllers

Provide direction and control of the exercise. Controllers play a crucial role throughout the exercise process. Their first and most important function is to maintain exercise safety. They maintain the sequence of events, control the flow of message injects, and are responsible for the overall conduct of the exercise. Controllers are in a unique position to view exercise play, understand the dynamics of an action or activity as it unfolds, and comment on what they observe. It is their responsibility to ensure that responders do not respond in a manner that might jeopardize safety and that responders remain focused on exercise play that demonstrates the exercise objectives.

Evaluators

Document and evaluate the performance of responders and any resources used by the responders (e.g., drawings, reference materials, maps). Prior to the start of the exercise, evaluators are assigned to assess specific locations or responder functions. An evaluator's function during the exercise is to observe and document exercise activities and conditions. Responder performance must be evaluated against plans and procedures using criteria established prior to the exercise. The evaluation assessment is performed immediately after the exercise is terminated, during which the responders discuss their performance.

NOTE: For tabletop exercises, consider having a scribe or notetaker. This will help with documentation for the creation of the after-action report and identifying strengths and areas of improvement.

Exercise Director

The senior exercise official. Holds primary authority and overall responsibility for the design, development, control, and evaluation of the exercise.

Exercise Planning Team

The Exercise Planning Team (EPT) consists of trusted members from each organization/group that helped develop the exercise. If possible, these members should not be players in the exercise but may act as evaluators, controllers, and observers.

Facilitators

Guide exercise play and are responsible for ensuring that participant discussions remain focused on the exercise objectives. Facilitators introduce or present modules, lead discussions, and coordinate issues among groups as thoroughly as possible within the available time.

Observers

An individual that does not directly participate in the exercise but may watch selected segments of the exercise as it unfolds. Observers should not communicate directly with players. They are, however, responsible for reporting to controllers any condition they believe has or may have the potential to compromise the safe conduct of the event.

Players

Respond to emergency situations as they would during an actual emergency (unless they are briefed otherwise before the drill begins, or unless they are directed to do otherwise by a controller) to control and mitigate the simulated emergency.

Understanding the Differences: Tabletop, Functional, and Full-Scale Exercises

The following content was extracted from the Homeland Security Exercise & Evaluation Program (HSEEP) Doctrine. Schools are encouraged to review this document in its entirety. For more information and resources, please visit FEMA’s Exercise and Preparedness Tools webpage.

Drills and exercises can fall into one (1) of two (2) categories: Discussion-Based or Operations-Based.  The diagram below illustrates which types of drills and exercises fall into each.

        
Discussion-Based

        
Operations-Based

Discussion-Based Exercises

Discussion-based exercises include seminars, workshops, tabletop exercises (TTX), and games.  These types of exercises familiarize players with plans, policies, and procedures.  Discussion-based exercises focus on strategic, policy-oriented issues; while facilitators lead the discussion, keeping participants moving towards meeting the exercises objectives.

Tabletop Exercise (TTX)

A tabletop exercise is a discussion-based exercise intended to generate discussion of various issues in response to a hypothetical, simulated emergency. TTXs can be used to enhance general awareness, validate plans and procedures, rehearse concepts, and/or assess the types of systems needed to guide the prevention of, protection from, mitigation of, response to, and recovery from a defined incident. Generally, TTXs are aimed at facilitating conceptual understanding, identifying strengths and areas for improvement, and/or achieving changes in attitudes.

Schools should choose at least one (1) threat/hazard and one (1) functional content area (response measure) from their EOP to use in their simulated emergency.  TTX’s are discussion-based sessions where team members meet (typically in an informal setting) to discuss the simulated emergency in-depth, collaboratively examining areas of concern and solving problems.

Table 2.5, found in the HSEEP Doctrine, identifies the key components of a TTX:

Tabletop Exercise (TTX):
A discussion-based exercise in response to a scenario, intended to generate a dialogue of various issues to facilitate a conceptual understanding, identify strengths and areas for improvement, and/or achieve changes in perceptions about plans, policies, or procedures. 

Element

Considerations and Activities

Purpose
  • Generate discussion of various issues regarding an exercise scenario
  • Facilitate conceptual understanding, identify strengths and areas for improvement, and/or achieve changes in perceptions 
Structure
  • Scenario is presented to describe an event at a simulated time
  • Players apply their knowledge and skills to a list of problems presented by the facilitator
  • Problems are discussed as a group, and resolution may be reached and documented for later analysis
  • Plenary or breakout session(s)
  • Discussion led by a facilitator(s)
  • Presentation
Participant Goals
  • Enhance general awareness
  • Enhance roles and responsibility understanding
  • Validate plans and procedures
  • Discuss concepts and/or assess types of systems in a defined incident
Conduct Characteristics
  • Requires an experienced facilitator
  • In-depth discussion
  • Problem-solving environment
  • All participants should be encouraged to contribute to the discussion and be reminded that they are making decisions in a no-fault environment
Outcomes
  • Recommended revisions to current plans, policies, and procedures
  • An After-Action Report (AAR)/Improvement Plan (IP)

 

Operations-Based Exercises

Operations-based exercises include drills, functional exercises (FE), and full-scale exercises (FSE). These exercises validate plans, policies, procedures, and agreements; clarify roles and responsibilities; and identify resource gaps. Operations-based exercises include a real-time response such as initiating communications or mobilizing personnel and resources.

Functional Exercise (FE)

A functional exercise is an operations-based exercises designed to validate and evaluate capabilities, multiple functions and/or sub-functions, or interdependent groups of functions during a hypothetical, simulated emergency. FEs are typically focused on exercising plans, policies, procedures, and staff members involved in management, direction, command, and control functions. In FEs, events are projected through an exercise scenario with event updates, or injects, that drive activity at the management level.  An FE is conducted in a realistic, real-time environment; however, movement of personnel and equipment is usually simulated.

This situation/scenario is created by using at least one (1) threat/hazard in conjunction with at least one (1) functional content area (protective measure) identified in the school’s EOP.

Table 2.8, found in the HSEEP Doctrine, identifies the key components of a FE:

Functional Exercise (FE):
An operations-based exercise is designed to test and evaluate capabilities and functions while in a realistic, real-time environment; however, movement of resources is usually simulated.

Element

Considerations and Activities

Purpose
  • Validate and evaluate capabilities, multiple functions and/or sub-functions, or interdependent groups of activities
  • Exercise plans, policies, procedures, and staffs involved in management, direction command, and control functions
  • Apply established plans, policies, and procedures under crisis conditions
Structure
  • Events are projected through a realistic exercise scenario with event updates that drive activity typically at the management level
  • Controllers monitor simulated events to ensure that the participant activity remains within predefined boundaries of the exercise
  • Evaluators observe behaviors and compare them against established plans, policies, procedures, and standard practices (if applicable)
Participant Goals
  • Validate and evaluate capabilities
  • Focused on plans, policies, and procedures
Conduct Characteristics
  • Conducted in a realistic environment
  • Usually simulated deployment of resources and personnel
  • Include controller and evaluators
Outcomes
  • Management evaluation of incident command and school response
  • Performance analysis
  • Cooperative relationships are strengthened
  • An After-Action Report (AAR)/Improvement Plan (IP)

 

Full-Scale Exercise (FSE)

A full-scale exercise is an operations-based exercise intended to test and evaluate the school’s emergency procedures in an interactive manner. FSEs are typically the most complex and resource- intensive type of exercise. They involve multiple agencies and validate many facets of preparedness. FSEs often include many players operating under cooperative systems such as the "Incident Command System or Unified Command”.

The hypothetical, simulated emergency situation/scenario is created using at least one (1) threat/hazard in conjunction with multiple functional content areas (response measures) identified in the school’s EOP.  Schools often invite members of local law enforcement, fire, EMS, EMA, and/or behavioral health so all participants can obtain a realistic view of each agency’s capabilities and procedures.

Table 2.9, found in the HSEEP Doctrine, identifies the key components of an FSE:

Full-Scale Exercise (FSE):
An operations-based exercise that is typically the most complex and resource-intensive of the exercise types and often involves multiple agencies, jurisdictions/organizations, and real-time movement of resources.

Element

Considerations and Activities

Purpose
  • Often includes many players operating under cooperative systems such as the Incident Command System (ICS) Unified Command
  • Focus on implementing and analyzing the plans, policies, and procedures that may have been developed in discussion-based exercises and honed during previous, smaller exercises
Structure
  • Events are projected through an exercise scenario with event updates that drive activity at the operational level
  • Involves multiple agencies, organizations, and jurisdictions
  • The level of support needed may be greater than that needed for other types of exercises
  • Conducted in a realistic environment to mirror a real incident by presenting complex problems (boots on the ground)
Participant Goals
  • Demonstrate roles and responsibilities as addressed in plans and procedures
  • Coordinate between multiple agencies, organizations and jurisdictions
Conduct Characteristics
  • Rapid problem solving; critical thinking
  • Mobilization of personnel and resources
  • Exercise site is usually large with many activities occurring simultaneously
  • Site logistics require close monitoring
  • Safety issues, particularly regarding the use of props and special effects, must be monitored
  • Demonstrate roles and responsibilities as addressed in plans and procedures
Outcomes
  • Validate plans, policies, and procedures
  • Evaluate resource requirements
  • An After-Action Report (AAR)/Improvement Plan (IP)

Seven (7) Steps to a Successful Emergency Management Test (EMT)

The following steps were created to assist schools with the preparation and execution of an EMT.

1.  Develop an annual (or multi-year) master exercise schedule that includes the following:

  • Emergency Management Tests (one [1] per year);
  • State Fire Marshal drills*; and
  • Other emergency preparedness trainings or drills that the school administrator deems necessary.

Creating and maintaining this schedule will help your district or school make sure that drills and tests:

  • Are within the required timelines of state law, of at least once per calendar year;
  • Limit classroom interruption; and
  • Include the appropriate responders and community organizations, such as local police and fire, the county emergency management agency, or a mental health group.
  • For more information about this, please see the “Developing a Multi-year Drills & Exercise Schedule” section of this webpage.

2.  Select an exercise type to use (be sure they rotate each year).

  • Tabletop;
  • Functional*; or
  • Full-Scale

3.  Decide which situation (or hazard) and corresponding protective measures of your school plan you will practice.

  • Select one (1) threat/hazard identified in the Hazard & Threat Analysis portion of your EOP.  Here is an example of a chart that identifies hazards/threats that may be applicable to your school. The below chart was taken from the OSSC Sample Plan, pg. 13.

  • Once you select the hazard, there are typically several protective measures that could be used in response to a hazard.  The below chart was taken from the OSSC Sample Plan, pg. 18.

4.    Decide on key aspects of the exercise.

  • Date of exercise;
  • Length of time;
  • Participants (If students are participating, you should notify them and their parents prior to the start of the exercise and provide age-appropriate material to prevent emotional trauma); and
  • Location (Where will the exercise take place?)
  • REMS TA Center has created a Developing Emergency Exercises Worksheet to assist schools in planning out the exercise details.

5.  Identify, revise and draft a situation/scenario that will help you test your plan’s capabilities.

  • This is a theoretical series of events that you are trying to simulate in the test.
  • It can be written in the form of a narrative or a timeline.
  • Most situations/scenarios will have three (3) sections: initial response [0-1 hours], intermediate response [1-24 hours], and recovery [24 hours or more].
  • If needed, reach out to your local EMA for assistance with developing the scenario.

6.    Capture strengths and improvement areas of the test. Allow for written feedback to ensure you capture information from participants.

  • Strengths and improvement areas are the cornerstones of exercising safety plans. These areas focus specifically on training and procedures as outlined in the EOP, not the performance of individuals.
    • Strengths are areas where training or other aspects of the plan functioned correctly
    • Improvement areas are where training or procedures proved to be insufficient or parts of the plan did not produce the expected outcome.  Improvement areas are not based on how poorly individuals did during the exercise, but rather about needed adjustments in the plan or gaps identified in procedures or training. Participants should identify procedures to add or remove so that plan-based responses result in desired outcomes.
      • Example A: Law enforcement arrival to the reunification site was delayed (greater than 30 minutes) as the new reunification site was not communicated to first responders. 
      • Example B: Not all classes arrived to the pre-identified assembly point as substitute staff were not trained in building-specific evacuation procedures and assembly points.
  • Create an Improvement Plan addressing the areas for improvement. The safety committee should analyze improvement areas and identify corrective actions to improve response procedures. An identified solution should be noted, implemented and re-evaluated during the next exercise.
    • Example A: The EOP will be disseminated to stakeholders within 72 hours of being updated by the school principal. The stakeholders will meet annually prior to the start of the school year to go over the school’s emergency management plan.
    • Example B: Emergency procedure training in the EOP will be updated by the coordinator – safety plan to include that the school secretary will provide just-in-time training to all temporary staff during onboarding.
  • Understand that there may be questions and some confusion the first time you conduct an EMT. This is entirely normal and expected.
    • Set expectations around the types of questions and be open to the feedback.
    • The process of answering questions from staff, students and parents help to refine your plan so that your next EMT will go smoother.

7.    Within 30 days of the date your EMT was conducted, document it using the School Safety Plans Portal located in the OH|ID.  See the section of this webpage titled “How to complete an EMT after-action report” for further details.

* The Ohio State Fire Marshall’s Office requires fire, lockdown, tornado and rapid dismissal drills. Depending on the nature of the drill, you may be able to the use one (1) of these to count as a functional exercise.

How to Complete an After-Action Report (AAR)

Schools are required to submit an After-Action Report no later than 30 days of completing the exercise. For step-by-step instructions on how to compete this, download a copy of the EMT After-Action Report: Step-by-Step Instructions.

Only school administrators and safety plan coordinators will have the ability to access the School Safety Plans Portal.  If you fall into one (1) of these roles and are having difficulty accessing the Portal, please reach out to your local Ohio Education Directory System’s (OEDS) administrator for assistance.

Quick Steps:

  • Document exercise using the EMT Data Collection Worksheet.
  • Log onto OH│ID and select the School Safety Plans Portal.
  • From the main dashboard, enter your school’s IRN and select “Add 20XX EMT” under the EMT column.
  • Create a new EMT after-action report by selecting the “Add New Test” button.
  • Transfer the information documented on the EMT Data Collection Worksheet into the Portal.
  • Once all required sections/parts have been completed, select the “Complete” button to finalize the after-action report. If you are unable to select “Complete”, go back through your sections to see if you missed any areas.

Additional Tips:

  • When creating your exercise entry, be sure to indicate “No” when asked if the exercise was an actual emergency. Otherwise, you will not be able to count it is an EMT.

  • When using a “Chemical Accident” as your exercise scenario in Part 3, be sure to upload an MSD Sheet for the chemicals involved using the button indicated below.

  • When entering “Strengths and Improvement Areas” in Part 5, be sure that you enter three (3) separate entries for each Strength in Question 1. You will have to click “Add New Row” to add more than 1 entry.  Scroll down and do the same for each Improvement Area in Question 2.

Tabletop Toolkits: Instructional Guides & Templates

Ohio School Safety Center (OSSC) Resources

To better assist K-12 schools, the OSSC has developed multiple scenario-based templates for K-12 schools to use. Each tabletop exercise is designed to be completed in two (2) hours.

Simply click on any of the free templates below to get started.

Ohio Emergency Management Agency (OEMA) Resources

The Ohio Emergency Management Agency has K-12 Tabletop Exercise Toolkits that schools can adapt to their location. Toolkits include scenarios on K-12 School Severe Weather, K-12 School Active Aggressor, and K-12 School Hazardous Materials.

Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Resources

The federal government has created and published a multitude of resources to assist schools with emergency planning.  To view these resources, please visit FEMA’s website or SchoolSafety.gov.

Readiness and Emergency Management for Schools (REMS) Technical Assistance Center

The REMS TA Center hosts a virtual library of tools developed by schools and higher ed emergency managers in the field.  To review the resources available, go to the Readiness and Emergency Management for Schools Tool Box.

Department of Homeland Security (DHS)

DHSs Office of Academic Engagement (OAE) has resources readily available to support the K-12 community in preparing for, responding to, and recovering from a range of risks and threats.

These resources, made available on DHS’ Campus Resilience Program Resource Library, increase awareness of current risks and threats related to the academic community, provide tools and content for schools to measure specific campus vulnerabilities, include best practice guides and templates to help schools take action, and list opportunities for schools to evaluate its preparedness, response, and recovery capabilities.

Additional Resources

Family Reunification Resources
The OSSC in collaboration with Cuyahoga County Emergency Management Agency, Knox County Emergency Management Agency, Union County Emergency Management Agency, Jackson Township Police Department and the Ohio Emergency Management Agency, has developed school-specific family reunification resources.

The following documents were created to assist schools in developing a Family Reunification Policy.

  • Family Reunification Guide - breaks down the Ohio School Safety Center’s sample plan Family Reunification Annex and provides a breakdown of the new Reunification Policy template.  The guide also provides guidance on best practice for a school’s annex and policy.
  • Reunification Policy Template - is a sample policy schools could put in place to aid in the reunification process.  The template is easy to follow and adaptable to meet individual school needs.
  • Reunification Best Practices - is a document for schools to use to consider different aspects and brainstorm ideas for their annex and policy.
  • Reunification Card Sample - is a printable document schools could use to aid in the reunification process

Hotwash Resources

A hotwash, more commonly known as an “after-action” review, refers to the discussions and evaluations of an agency’s performance immediately following an exercise, planned event, or real-world incident.  The main purpose of a hotwash session is to capture feedback about issues, concerns, or proposed improvements that participants may have, which then leads to the next phase known as “lessons learned”.

The following documents were created to assist schools in completing a hotwash.

  • Hotwash Guide - gives step-by-step directions to a successful hotwash after an emergency management test (EMT) or exercise.
  • Hotwash PowerPoint Template - a visual aid designed to assist schools with conducting a hotwash. Visual references, such as PowerPoints, can be helpful when needing to summarize events (i.e., in real-world incidents) and/or prompt questions to aid in discussion. Visual aids come in many forms and may consist of presentations, pictures, graphs, and/or timelines.
  • Hotwash Note Template - provides a template for taking notes during a hotwash.  It helps to capture strengths, weaknesses, and areas of improvement that are identified by participants.
  • Hotwash Sign-in Sheet Template - documents exercise participants in the event that the hotwash is not done immediately following the exercise or event.

Developing a Multi-Year Drills & Exercises Schedule

Conducting drills and exercises are critical to the preparedness process. A multi-year drills and exercise schedule is a tool that can be used to help your school attain preparedness goals while aligning with state mandates.

State Fire Marshal’s Office (SFMO) Drills & Ohio School Safety Center (OSSC) Exercise Requirements
The Ohio School Safety Center developed the following table to help schools understand the differences between the SFMO’s drill requirements and the OSSC exercise requirements.  The table combines all of the state mandated drills and exercises that schools must complete each year.  As you will notice, some of the drills and exercises are based upon the academic year while others are based upon the calendar year. NOTE: Effective September 30th, schools must document emergency evacuation drills using the Ohio State Fire Marshal Code Enforcement Portal.  Paper copies will no longer be accepted unless there are extenuating circumstances. For step-by-step instructions, click here.

NOTE: Schools must conduct at least one (1) EMT every calendar year. Schools should rotate between the three (3) types: Tabletop, Functional, and Full-scale. (i.e., 2017- Tabletop, 2018- Functional, 2019- Full-Scale…. then the next three (3)-year cycle starts over.) Although the three (3) types of EMTs can be conducted in any order, it is recommended that schools use a building block approach.  In a building block approach, schools would conduct exercises in the following order: tabletop, functional, then full-scale. This approach allows for the plans and procedures to be introduced in the tabletop exercise, evaluated during the functional exercise, and fully conducted through a full-scale exercise. Improvement areas and corrective actions identified in previous exercises should be tested and evaluated in the next building block exercise.

Multi-Year Drills & Exercises Schedule
The Ohio School Safety Center has developed a Multi-Year Drills & Exercises Schedule (template) to help schools plan for drills and exercises. The dates identified in the mock schedule are “hypothetical” and do not reflect true dates.  Schools may utilize and adapt the template as they see fit.

Common Questions

Q1) Are EMTs the same as the State Fire Marshal’s drills?

A1) No. Although all exercises and drills are intended to increase preparedness, there are key differences between DPS’ annual EMT and the State Fire Marshall’s drills. The State Fire Marshall covers typical fire, tornado, and lockdown drills. An EMT is a scheduled, annual tabletop, functional, or full-scale exercise. For additional information, please refer to the “Understanding the Differences: Tabletop, Functional, and Full-Scale Exercises” portion of this webpage.

Q2) What is a tabletop exercise (TTX)?

A2) As stated in OAC 4501: 5-1-01, “tabletop exercises (TTX) are typically held in an informal setting intended to generate discussion of various issues regarding a hypothetical, simulated emergency. TTXs can be used to enhance general awareness, validate plans and procedures, rehearse concepts, and/or assess the types of systems needed to guide the prevention of, protection from, mitigation of, response to, and recovery from a defined incident. Generally, TTXs are aimed at facilitating conceptual understanding, identifying strengths and areas for improvement, and/or achieving changes in attitudes.”

The Ohio Emergency Management Agency offers K-12 Tabletop Exercise Toolkits that schools can adapt to their location.

For additional resources, please visit FEMA’s website at https://training.fema.gov/programs/emischool/el361toolkit/conductingexercisesdrills.htm, or SchoolSafety.gov at https://www.schoolsafety.gov/respond-and-recover/training-exercises-and-drills.

Q3) What is a functional exercise?

A3) As stated in OAC 4501: 5-1-01, “Functional exercises are designed to validate and evaluate capabilities, multiple functions and/or sub-functions, or interdependent groups of functions. FEs are typically focused on exercising plans, policies, procedures, and staff members involved in management, direction, command, and control functions. In FEs, events are projected through an exercise scenario with event updates that drive activity at the management level. An FE is conducted in a realistic, real-time environment; however, movement of personnel and equipment is usually simulated.”

For additional resources, please visit FEMA’s website at https://training.fema.gov/programs/emischool/el361toolkit/conductingexercisesdrills.htm, or SchoolSafety.gov at https://www.schoolsafety.gov/respond-and-recover/training-exercises-and-drills.

Q4) What is a full-scale exercise?

A4) As stated in OAC 4501: 5-1-01, “Full-scale exercises are typically the most complex and resource- intensive type of exercise. They involve multiple agencies, organizations, and jurisdictions and validate many facets of preparedness. FSEs often include many players operating under cooperative systems such as the "Incident Command System or Unified Command".

For additional resources, please visit FEMA’s website at https://training.fema.gov/programs/emischool/el361toolkit/conductingexercisesdrills.htm, or SchoolSafety.gov at https://www.schoolsafety.gov/respond-and-recover/training-exercises-and-drills.

Q5) Do EMTs operate on a school year or calendar year?

A5) EMTs operate on a calendar year. An exercise completed anytime between January 1st and December 31st will count for that calendar year.

Q6) Can I complete additional exercises?

A6) Yes. Although schools are only required by law to report one (1) exercise per year, the Ohio School Safety Center encourages school to frequently exercise their emergency operations plan. 

Q7) I’m not sure what type of exercise my school should complete – can I see past exercise entries?

A7) Yes. In the School Safety Plans Portal, click on the blue button in the “Emergency Management Test” column. To view data for a specific year, click on the blue “View” button.

Q8) How do I enter my After-Action Report?

A8) In the School Safety Plans Portal, click on the blue button in the “Emergency Management Test” column and then “Add New Test”. For step-by-step instructions on how to submit an EMT after-action report, please refer to the EMT After-Action Report Step-by-Step Instructions guide.  Help documents are also available by clicking on the “Help” button in the upper right-hand corner of the School Safety Plans Portal and selecting the “How to Complete and EMT After-Action Report” option.

Education & Training

FEMA Courses

Independent Study Courses (self-paced)

The Emergency Management Institute (EMI) offers self-paced courses designed for people who have emergency management responsibilities.  All courses are offered free-of-charge to those who qualify for enrollment.  Each course will specify which roles are permitted to take the class.

*Full list of independent study courses.

EMI School Program

EMI offers school officials courses supporting the implementation of NIMS, as well as general courses aimed at building school emergency management capacity.  If you would like to learn more about the EMI School Program, click here.

In addition to the courses listed under the “Independent Study Courses” section above, the following courses are recommended for leadership personnel:

*Full list of EMI courses.

Webinars & Presentations

How to Submit an Emergency Management Test After Action Report

This presentation will walk you through submitting an Emergency Management Test “After Action Report”. It will go over what is required by the Ohio Revised Code and Ohio Administrative Code.

Watch: How to Submit an Emergency Management Test Presentation