District 211 Communications/Notifications

  • This is important information describing our improved differentiated tiers of communication designed to help you quickly recognize the level of urgency associated with notifications you could receive from District 211 or from your neighborhood high school.

    When formulating the system of multiple tiers, we considered many differing opinions about the designated level that could pertain to a given circumstance.  These exchanges confirmed the benefit of raising the level of attention and awareness resulting from multiple tiers of communication.

    The following color-coded categories will appear in the subject line of each message to help you quickly differentiate the nature of the communication:

    • Level Green: District 211 GENERAL INFORMATION
    • Level Yellow: District 211 Public Safety AWARENESS
    • Level Orange: District 211 Weather/School Safety ALERT
    • Code Red: District 211 EMERGENCY COMMUNICATION


    The following brief descriptions summarize the information that could be included within each of the communication tiers: 

    Level Green: District 211 GENERAL INFORMATION
    A Level Green communication will include general information from the school or District or information about regularly scheduled school or District events. Examples of Level Green communications would include student progress reports, including six- and 12-week grade reports; District 211 College Night information; information about registration; or newsletters from the principal or superintendent.

    Level Yellow: District 211 Public Safety AWARENESS
    A Level Yellow communication will include information about an incident that has taken place in or near a District 211 school that warrants attention and awareness, and which officials have concluded poses no threat to the school.  As an example, an incident might occur in the community but not within the immediate vicinity of a high school and the police have notified the District about the incident to ensure that precautions are taken to enable the school day to proceed. In some cases, the police may call for a soft lockdown or send police personnel to a school as an extra measure of support.  Within Level Yellow, the police have concluded that no direct threat exists to students or people inside the school.

    Additional examples of notifications for Level Yellow include:

    • Police involved in evaluating rumors of a threat conclude that no threat exists
    • Domestic violence incident in the community and police advise a soft-lockdown
    • Armed robbery in the community
    • Neighboring school incident 

    Level Orange: District 211 Weather/School Safety ALERT
    A Level Orange communication will indicate that an event has occurred which will impact typical school operations.  The subject line will differentiate whether the alert is due to weather conditions or to matters regarding school safety.  Weather-related school closings will be communicated via Level Orange.

    An example involving police could include intervening in a dangerous event in the near proximity to a school or that could possibly involve our students.  A Level Orange communication associated with local police will include information describing the police involvement needed inside or outside the school in order to ensure safety and security for students and staff members.

    Additional examples of notifications for Level Orange include:

    • School closure due to extreme cold or winter conditions
    • Tornado warning in the vicinity requiring students to shelter in place
    • Violence in the community in close proximity to the school
    • Gas leak in the school or in the nearby community 

    Code Red: District 211 EMERGENCY COMMUNICATION
    The Code Red tier is reserved for the highest level of emergency in which harm is likely possible or has already occurred.  If a Code Red communication is issued, information will be sent to you via all available platforms and additional communications will be forthcoming to keep all parties informed.

    Additional examples of notifications for Code Red include:

    • An active threat that has already resulted in or will likely lead to injuries in the school
    • Confirmed fire requiring school evacuation with possible injuries
    • Structural failure 

    The new color-coded system improves your ability to quickly recognize communications that warrant your immediate attention.  If you see a Level Yellow, Level Orange or Code Red message, you will likely want to read these messages quickly.  Any Level Green message contains general information and may not require your immediate attention.

    Working closely with groups of parents, students, and staff members, we continually seek to identify how we might improve the effectiveness of our communications.  The differentiated system of communication tiers is intended to help you quickly understand the nature of the message you are receiving.

    Lisa Small


    Lisa Small