High-Quality Emergency Operations Planning (EOP)

1.4 Planning Templates

The planning templates are the foundation for written EOPs at the district and campus levels. A comprehensive EOP begins with a district plan and is supplemented by campus-level plans. However, high-quality emergency operations plans must be logical in flow while remaining comprehensive in nature.

The core of the EOP is called the Basic Plan. The content within the Basic Plan is laid out logically and follows the outline below:

  • Introductory Materials
  • Overview & Purpose
  • Situation & Assumptions
  • Concept of Operations
  • Organization & Assignment of Responsibilities
  • Direction & Control
  • Administration & Support
  • Maintenance & Changes
  • Appendices & Attachments

Annexes are developed in order to address supporting functions and specific hazard-based needs that may arise and impact the school. Functional annexes focus on functions that are critical to the success of emergency response operations and may require specific actions during such operations. These annexes typically include specific information and direction and will often indicate specific responsibilities, tasks, and operational actions related to the function the annex addresses. Examples of common functions in Texas schools include continuity of operations, transportation, and medical/public health/mental health services.

Hazard-specific annexes, on the other hand, focus on planning for the impact of, response to, and recovery from a specific threat, hazard, or incident. Hazard-specific annexes typically address unique response details, risk areas, evacuation routes, provisions for public information, protective equipment requirements, and appropriate job aids.

The Basic Plan and its annexes may also contain additional attachments known as implementing instructions. Implementing instructions clarify the content of the document to which they are attached and provide additional detail in a user-friendly manner. Examples of implementing instructions include standard operating procedures, charts, tables, forms, and checklists.

The diagram below depicts the structure of a high-quality EOP:

The Texas School Safety Center has developed a number of templates designed to assist Texas schools in developing a high-quality EOP. These templates include a basic plan and a number of functional and hazard-specific annexes. While the focus of these documents may differ, the approaches to effective emergency planning discussed throughout the remainder of this toolkit are applicable to all templates. Furthermore, schools may find it necessary to develop additional hazard-specific and functional annexes for which a template is not yet available.

Instructions on how to utilize these templates are provided in later sections of this toolkit. However, gaining a familiarity with the templates and the content within each document will be beneficial as you progress to the next section of the toolkit.