In mid-1964, the National Commission on Safety Education of the National Education Association undertook a comprehensive study to determine the Current Status of Civil Defense in Schools and to provide guidelines for appropriate action.
For more than 15 years the National Commission on Safety Education of the National Education Association has been actively interested in helping cite Nation’s schools teach children the principles and practices of preparedness for both natural and man-made disasters.
During this period, some of our schools have developed and conducted civil
defense programs. Some proportion of these programs has been devoted totally
to protection against specific, locally probable, natural disasters. Other programs
have included provision for protection in both natural and man-made disasters.
Still others have stressed protection alone and some have included pertinent
subject matter in the regular curriculum. No doubt some programs have been
kept active and up to date. Equally probable, some have not.
No one has really known the nature and extent of school activity in civil defense throughout the United States.
Therefore, at the request of the Office of Civil Defense of the Department of Defense in mid-1964, the National Commission on Safety Education of the National Education Association undertook a comprehensive study to determine
the status of civil defense in the Nation’s schools and to provide guidelines for appropriate action.
First, the character and scope of school involvement in civil defense preparedness were determined through responses to a nationwide questionnaire survey conducted among representative samples of school systems of different sizes.
The questionnaire was designed by the NEA Research Division and incorporated items suggested by a project advisory committee of ten educators. The NEA Research Division also carried out the survey and tabulated the results.
Second, the project writer personally visited ten school systems selected on the bases of experience in development of civil defense programs and representativeness of various enrollment strata and geographical areas. School civil defense
activities were discussed in detail with the administrators whose experience and recommendations contributed to this publication. As a supplemental step, three items on school civil defense were included in an extensive poll addressed to a
representative sample comprising some 20,000 teachers. Information from the site visits, together with data from the questionnaire survey and the responses to the teacher poll, provided much of the substance from which the guidelines
herein are derived.
It is hoped that this report will not only interest school personnel but that it will cause them to assess what they are now doing in civil defense to discharge
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