In An Emergency Take Action

At Three Rivers Local School District, all staff and students are trained with the (SRP) Standard Response Protocol program.


A critical ingredient in the safe school recipe is the uniform classroom response to any incident. Weather events, fires, accidents, intruders and other threats to student safety are scenarios that are planned and trained for by school and district administration and staff. Historically, schools have taken this scenario-based approach to respond to hazards and threats. It's not uncommon to find a stapled sheaf of papers or even a tabbed binder in a teacher's desk that describes a variety of things that might happen and the specific response to each event.

View the Standard Response Protocol


The Standard Response Protocol (SRP) is based not on individual scenarios but on the response to any given situation. Like the Incident Command System (ICS), SRP demands a specific vocabulary but also allows for great flexibility. The premise is simple - there are four specific actions that can be performed during an incident. When communicating these, the action is labeled with a "Term of Art" and is then followed by a "Directive." Execution of the action is performed by active participants, including students, staff, teachers and first responders.

  • Lockout is followed by the Directive: "Secure the Perimeter" and is the protocol used to safeguard students and staff within the building.

  • Lockdown is followed by "Locks, Lights, Out of Sight" and is the protocol used to secure individual rooms and keep students quiet and in place.

  • Evacuate is always followed by a location, and is used to move students and staff from one location to a different location in or out of the building.

  • Shelter is always followed by a type and a method and is the protocol for group and self protection.

These specific actions can act as both a verb and a noun. If the action is Lockdown, it would be announced on public address as "Lockdown! Locks, Lights, Out of Sight." Communication to local Law Enforcement Agencies would then be "We are under Lockdown." Each response has specific student and staff action. The Evacuate response is always followed by a location: "Evacuate to the Bus Zone." Responses can also be combined: "Evacuate to Hallway; Shelter for Tornado; Drop, Cover and Hold."




The benefits of SRP become quickly apparent. By standardizing the vocabulary, all stakeholders can understand the response and status of the event. For students, this provides continuity of expectations and actions throughout their educational career. For teachers, this becomes a simpler process to train and drill. For first responders, the common vocabulary and protocols establish a greater predictability that persists through the duration of an incident. Parents can easily understand the practices and can reinforce the protocol. Additionally, this protocol enables rapid response determination when an unforeseen event occurs.

The protocol also allows for a more predictable series of actions as an event unfolds. An intruder event may start as a Lockdown, but as the intruder is isolated, first responders might transition parts of the school to an "Evacuate to the Gym and Lockdown," and later "Evacuate to the Bus Zone."




The differentiation between Lockout and Lockdown is a critical element in SRP. A Lockout recovers all students from outside the building, secures the building perimeter and locks all outside doors. This would be implemented when there is a threat or hazard outside of the building. Criminal activity, dangerous events in the community, or even a vicious dog on the playground would be examples of a Lockout response. While the Lockout response encourages greater staff situational awareness, it allows for educational practices to continue with little classroom interruption or distraction.

Lockdown is a classroom-based protocol that requires locking the classroom door, turning off the lights and placing students out of sight of any corridor windows. Student action during Lockdown is to remain quiet. It does not mandate locking outside doors. There are several reasons for not locking perimeter doors during a Lockdown. Risk is increased to students or staff in exposed areas attempting to lock outside doors. Locking outside doors inhibits entry of first responders and increases risk as responders attempt to breach doors.

There may be situations where both Lockdown and Lockout need to be performed, but in this case they are identified individually. "Lockout! Secure the Perimeter. Lockdown! Locks, Lights, out of Sight." would be announced on public address. We are in "Lockdown and Lockout" would be conveyed to emergency services or 911.




SRP also acknowledges that some school incidents involve a tactical response from law enforcement, and suggests consulting with local law enforcement for specific simple actions in that event.


Safety Team


I retired as an Assistant Chief from the Indian Hill Rangers in August of 2020 after 35 years in Law Enforcement.  I spent time with both  Covington and Cincinnati Police Departments.  I was a SWAT Officer and a K9 Handler in Cincinnati.  In August of 2021, Dr. Ault gave me the privilege of working on the School Safety and Security Team at the Three Rivers Educational Campus.  Part of my duties in Indian Hill included Threat Assessment and Active Shooter Response Training for the schools and churches in our city.  I look forward to working with the school administration and staff to make our schools as safe as possible.   


My name is Laurie Bello and this is my 6th year with the school district. I retired after working for 34 years with the police department. I am currently the Truancy Officer and I work on the Safety team. On my off time, I really enjoy traveling and spending time with my family.

If I can be of any assistance don't hesitate to call me.


My Name is Nate Cole and this is my third year with the security department at TRLSD. I coached Football here for two years and will be entering my fourth year as the Girls JV Basketball coach.  I have also coached both boys and girls Track for three years.  I graduated from UC, and also played Football for the Bearcats.   My hometown is Memphis, Tennessee.  I am married to another Three Rivers employee, Whitney Cole.  We have one son, Nathan Cole III (Tre) and another on the way!


I am entering my 15th year in School Safety and Security and 3rd year at Three Rivers Educational Campus. I spent 12 years on the security team at Western Hills High School with the last 3 years as head of security. I graduated from Indiana University in 2010 with a B.A. in General Studies as well as the Great Oaks Academy with O.P.O.T.A. certification in 2009. I also attended Safe Streets training as well as the NASRO (National School Resource Officer) conference in 2019. A native of Lawrenceburg IN, I graduated from Lawrenceburg HS in 2002. I am married to my wife, Amy Holland and have 3 children, Myles, Baylee, and Trey.