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Peshawar attack: Centre reissues advisory to schools

The advisory, which runs into five pages, was first issued in 2010 by the Centre after David Coleman
Headley, who was arrested in the US, revealed that along with the landmarks that were targeted in the 2008 Mumbai attacks, he had photographed and videotaped two boarding schools for terror group Lashkar-e-Taiba.

The Union home ministry on Friday issued an advisory to all states and Union territories reiterating CBSE’s 2010 guidelines to schools on dealing with terror situations.

If gunmen storm a school, the note shared with schools says, “Children and teachers should stay back in their respective rooms...   they should close the doors from inside and lie low in the classroom to escape random firing.”

Warning against moving children towards a door in an attempt to escape, or moving them into an open field, the government says if teachers are aware of where the terrorists are positioned, and can identify a safe passage from the classroom to a gate, they should lead the children in single file and in silence to the exit. The government also stresses that if teachers have any doubt about what to do, they should wait for the police to arrive and deal with the terrorists.

School gates should be closed and locked after children have arrived in the morning, and guards should use an alarm button if an intruder tries to storm one of the entrances. School officials and local police must identify a place near the school where parents can gather in case of an emergency for updates.

Parents must not rush to the school and should receive SMS-es with updates and details on where and when to gather for information on their children.

Schools must have working alarm and Public Address Systems, and drills must be conducted regularly so all staff and students are aware of the steps to take in case of a terror strike.

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