Tuesday, November 13th, 2018

Salt Lake City School District: Streamlining School Safety Management

Posted by Rachael Ballard Filed under: Compliance, Courses, Human Resources, MSDS, Operations, OSHA, Workers' Comp

Prior to 2016, consistently managing on-site state and federally required staff training at Utah’s Salt Lake City School District was a hefty order. The district’s 41 schools span the entire city limits – approximately 109 square miles – and the time and effort it took to ensure all requirements were met often resulted in inefficiency and frustration among central office staff. Plus, the district struggled to provide a positive onboarding experience for new staff. Too often there would be delays in when new hires could start because of lack of available seats in their in-person orientation session.

The district knew it needed to make some changes. At the beginning of the 2016-17 school year, they partnered with PublicSchoolWORKS to develop a comprehensive online safety training program that would streamline processes and provide a better orientation experience for new staff.

Now, the district uses PublicSchoolWORKS’ Staff Training System to deploy and manage the completion of all required staff training courses and specialty courses tailored to staff members’ job specifications. The new program has also expedited the new hire onboarding process because all new hires can take their required training online.

“This is our third year using the online staff training,” said Byron Garritson, Director of Human Resources at Salt Lake City School District. “Employees are comfortable with the online format. It’s second nature to us now.”

But training wasn’t the only area in need of streamlining. The district needed a better way to store Safety Data Sheets (SDS) so all employees could easily access chemical information, labels, and handling instructions. PublicSchoolWORKS helped the district create its own inventory of all the chemicals used in each school through a customized online SDS binder. And, employees have 24/7 telephone access to chemical specialists, spill specialists and poison control hotlines to answer all questions about the safe handling of chemicals, as well as how to safely address a chemical exposure or spill should one occur.

Next, the district implemented PublicSchoolWORKS’ Staff Accident Management System to better manage and track injuries and claims. When a staff member gets hurt, an online accident report is completed and submitted to the system, which automatically notifies key administrators to investigate the incident, remove any hazard(s) from the scene, and, if necessary, contact the insurance company. The system also automatically re-enrolls the injured employee in training related to the injury to help minimize the chance of the injury reoccurring.

“The Staff Accident Management System has really helped out our administrator who leads workers’ comp,” said Garritson. “It has definitely helped streamline our internal processes.”

While the system’s online content and automation met the district’s needs, Garritson is most impressed with PublicSchoolWORKS’ specialized customer service.

For example, the PublicSchoolWORKS Research & Development team tracks state and federal legislation so they can update or create content to help districts meet new requirements. Prior to working with PublicSchoolWORKS, the district attended legislative sessions and read resources from organizations like the Society for Human Resource Management to try to stay updated, but this was too time-consuming. Now, the district is briefed on the new requirement by their Program Management Coordinator and instructed of the resources that will ensure the district is in compliance.

“This was one of the reasons we chose PublicSchoolWORKS over the competition,” said Garritson. “When we saw this in action – our Program Management Coordinator contacted us about a new requirement that wasn’t even on our radar – I was blown away. Many products do not deliver what they promise, but PublicSchoolWORKS does.”

Want to follow Salt Lake City School District’s lead and streamline school safety management in your district? Contact us today.

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