School Safety & Security

All York County School Division school buildings are secured throughout the school day. A secured school means the school building remains locked at all times. To gain entrance to a school, visitors must ring the bell at the front door. Once access to the building is gained, visitors must report to the main office and sign in with a valid state-issued ID.

School Emergency Terms

In the event of a school emergency situation, the York County School Division and school staff may use the following terms to ensure a common language. These terms are also used by local law enforcement.

Hold in Place:

Typically occurs when there is a non-threatening circumstance, such as a student or staff medical emergency, and when students need to be kept from a specific area of the building until the circumstance is resolved

Modified Lockdown:

Typically occurs when there is a potential threat to safety outside the building and law enforcement advises this action; entry and exit to the school will be restricted and regular classroom schedules are followed except for outdoor activities


Typically occurs when there is potential threat to safety inside the building; entry and exit to the school will be restricted and students and staff follow lockdown procedures to maintain safety. Students and staff will be asked to silence their cell phones and other electronic devices as part of the safety procedures.


Occurs when there is a potential threat to safety and leaving the building is the safest alternative, such as a fire alarm activation. Attendance is taken to assure all staff and students are out of the building and arrive at the designation site safely.

Parent Information

Access to school facilities may be limited during an emergency as it may be necessary to keep the streets and parking lot clear for emergency vehicles. If it is hazardous for students to be released, everyone will be kept inside the school until notified by the authorities that it is safe outside. Schools will act with the safety of students in mind, and school officials will always follow the directives of emergency personnel.

Parents are asked not to call or come to a school during an emergency. We understand and respect your concern, but it is essential that the telephone system is available for emergency communications and that staff are handling their emergency roles.

Emergency Notification

Parents will be notified of emergencies through the division's rapid notification system. Parents are encouraged to remain close to their source of communication, whether it is phone or email, to ensure they are receiving accurate and timely updates on the emergency from school division staff.

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