A lockdown is usually used in response to an incident directed at the school (e.g. a dangerous person on the school grounds.

During a lockdown, we stay inside until we receive the ‘all clear’.We follow the direction of authorities and emergency services to minimise the threat to people at the school.

If we do not receive detailed instructions from authorities and/or emergency services, we follow our standard lockdown procedures until further information is available.

If we decide the situation does not require a full lockdown or are advised by authorities that a full lockdown is not required, we may follow a shelter in place response.

Shelter in place

Shelter in place is usually used in response to an incident near the school, but not directed at the school specifically (e.g. a severe weather event, or an incident in the community that is not in or near the school grounds).

During a shelter in place, staff move everyone who is onsite inside and close doors and windows.

We restrict entry and exit to school buildings and continue normal school activities as much as possible. We do not allow anyone in or out of the grounds and buildings until we receive the ‘all clear’.

During either a lockdown or shelter in place, we will send out text notifications and emails to parents as soon as this is safe to do so. We will also send out a further message when the lockdown or shelter in place has been lifted.


- An alarm will sound. This is to gain everyone’s attention and focus them on the voice message over the intercom
- Lock the classroom doors and windows
- Close curtains (especially in ground floor classrooms)
- All students go under desks away from windows or doorways
- Stay silent until all clear is given by SLT or H&S Team
- When lockdown is lifted a 1sec alarm will sound followed by a voice message over the intercom


- Stay low
- Stay quiet
- If outside – Move inside immediately.

Our school Policies can be viewed on SchoolDocs.

Username: stmaryswellington 

Password: mercy

These lockdown procedures are based on best practices from the NZ Ministry of Education Guidelines.