Fall 2018

Assessing School Safety Risks

By Shawn Bubb, MSGIA Director of Insurance Services

Assessing the safety risks in our public schools is becoming an increasingly complex process that requires multiple layers of analysis, varying degrees of professional discipline, and, undoubtedly, significant resources beyond those typically found in our member school districts.  Yet despite these attendant challenges, if the process is thoughtful and thorough, it can be as worthwhile as it is successful. Read more

Allowing Paraeducators to Safely Work with Students

By Annette Satterly, Risk Management Associate

 School Districts are full of unsung heroes, and certainly, our paraeducators are among those in our midst whose important work often goes unnoticed or underappreciated.  To be sure, these individuals deserve credit for all that they do on a daily basis; and to demonstrate our appreciation for this vital role that they play in the lives of our staff and students, I enjoin you to honor them, in part, by helping to attend to their safety needs.  Read more 

Helpful links to NSBA materials

Protecting Personal Information: Managing and Preventing Data Security Breaches

Plan for Safety by Shamus P. O’meara

Enhancing School Safety Using A Threat Assessment Model – An Operational Guide for Preventing Targeted school violence by the United States Secret Service

Operational Guide




Boiler System Loss Prevention

by Matt Komac, MSGIA Assistant Director – Property & Liability Pool Operations

 Everyone knows that we are dealing with aging infrastructures at our schools, and unfortunately with this situation comes an increased potential for property losses.  We have seen a recent uptick in Boiler & Machinery claims that aren’t necessarily related to the age of the units but rather to the lack of preventative maintenance.  Montana Law requires that all automatically fired boilers in schools must be inspected once each year. Read more

Coaches, P.E. Instructors, Volunteers, Chaperones, Recess Personnel Injuries

by Harry Cheff, Risk Management Associate

 There is an adage in the workers’ compensation arena that goes something like this:

 “Safety is about choices.

Most accidents can be traced back to an action or in-action.

When you investigate, you will find that someone made a choice or decision that lead to that accident!”

This guiding principle is doubtless germane to a broad range of educational situations common to our school grounds and related activities, but it’s especially applicable for those times when staff and faculty serving in their various roles as coaches, P.E. instructors, volunteers, chaperones, and/or recess monitors gamely but unwisely decide to participate in a student activity. This, in short, is when the train leaves the track, so to speak, and the adult becomes an injured player or participant rather than a safe and protective teacher, coach, or chaperone.  Thus mindful of the lessons we can learn from the above adage and the often avoidable mistakes of others, one is well served to keep in mind the following reminders when supervising students. Read more