Date of Award




Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)


Department of Educational and Counseling Psychology


School Psychology

Content Description

1 online resource (xi, 142 pages) : illustrations

Dissertation/Thesis Chair

Amanda B Nickerson

Committee Members

Kevin P Quinn


Crisis Planning, School Crisis Plan, School Crisis team, Crises, Emergency management, Education

Subject Categories

Educational Psychology | Psychology | Student Counseling and Personnel Services


As our nation has become more aware of severe, yet usually rare, crisis events in schools, the need for crisis planning is more evident. Although the severity of crises can differ greatly (e.g., school shooting versus physical assaults), crisis preparedness is an essential component of schools' responsibilities in order to effectively respond to a variety of situations. A total of 70 participants, from multiple states across the United States, completed an online questionnaire about demographic characteristics, resources for school crisis planning, and training on crisis topics. Participants also submitted a copy of their school's crisis plan to be evaluated using a recently developed checklist to assess the comprehensiveness of plans. The results indicated that school crisis plans were often lacking recommended components in the prevention, intervention, and postvention areas. Further analyses revealed that demographic variables did not significantly impact the variation in plan quality, and the total training score did not significantly predict plan quality. However, the regression analysis for the total resources score was significant in predicting plan quality. Another important finding of this research was that plans often included essential crisis procedures that were not included on the checklist used for evaluation. These results hold several implications for schools. First, schools should be revising and updating crisis plans on a regular basis. The lack of certain components based on the checklist should be taken into account when revising these plans. Schools may also want to invest in factors that will positively influence their crisis planning. The current study suggests that resources are a significant predictor of plan quality, and thus this should be an area where schools focus time and funding.