responding to a crisis

april 2015 ucla

Responding to Crises: A Few General Principles

Responding to Crises: A Few General Principles (1) Immediate Response – Focus on Restoring Equilibrium. In responding , the following have been highlighted in most guidelines as essentials: >>Be calm, direct, informative, authoritative, nurturing, and problem-solving oriented. >>Counter denial, by encouraging students to deal with facts of the event; give accurate information and explanations of what happened and what to expect – never give unrealistic or false assurances. >>Talk with students about their emotional reactions and encourage them to deal with such reactions as another facet of countering denial and other defenses that interfere with restoring equilibrium. >>Convey a sense hope and positive expectation – that while crises change things, there are ways to deal with the impact. (2) Move the Student from Being a Victim to Becoming an Actor. >>Plan with the student promising, realistic, and appropriate actions they will pursue when they leave you. >> Build on coping strategies the student has displayed. >> If feasible, involve the student in assisting with efforts to restore equilibrium. (3) Connect the Student with Immediate Social Support (peer buddies, other staff, family) to provide immediate support, guidance, and other forms of immediate assistance. (4) Take Care of the Caretakers. >>Be certain that support systems are in place for staff in general >>Be certain that support (debriefing) systems are in place for all crisis response personnel. (5) Provide for Aftermath Interventions – be certain that individuals needing follow-up assistance receive it. Need more information? Contact our Center.

nasp resources for crises and safety management

School Safety and Crisis Resources

NASP has made these materials available free of charge to the public in order to promote the ability of children and youth to cope with traumatic or unsettling events. Text from HTML materials may be adapted or reproduced without specific permission; all materials may also be linked to websites without prior permission from NASP. However, the integrity of the content must be maintained and NASP must be given proper credit.

Resources by Topic

School Safety/Violence Prevention


Crisis Management (CQ)

Crisis Response Resources

Media and Crisis


Natural Disasters

War/Terrorism Materials

Crisis Resources in Spanish and Other Languages

Grief and Bereavement