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FEMA, the military, and UK schools

 
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Caz
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PostPosted: Mon May 26, 2008 7:08 pm    Post subject: FEMA, the military, and UK schools Reply with quote

How much of Fema and the military are now involved in UK schools? www.pbworld.com writes charmingly about both Fema (you can even apply to work for Fema on their website) and BSF (Building Schools for the Future, in the UK). And VT Group (contracts to the MOD) is now, it seems, running schools in Walthamstow.

From the Fema website at http://www.fema.gov/txt/plan/prevent/rms/424/fema424.txt
Quote:
Risk Management Series
Design Guide
for Improving School Safety in Earthquakes,
Floods, and High Winds
January 2004



The concern for the UK and other countries is the mention of
Council of Educational Facility Planners International, the International Building Code (IBC), the International Code Council (ICC) Performance Code for Buildings and Facilities (2003 edition)

Quote:
Building Officials and Code Administrators International (BOCA); the Standard Building Code (SBC), published by Southern Building Code Congress International (SBCCI); and the Uniform Building Code (UBC), published by International Conference of Building Officials (ICBO).

Quote:
Meanwhile, after years of negotiation, all three model code entities have now consolidated their services, products, and operations into one member service operation, the International Code Council. The ICC first published a unified model building code, the International Building Code (IBC) in 2000, with revisions planned on a 3-year basis. The seismic provisions of the IBC are based primarily on the unified UBC/NEHRP provisions.


Listed amongst references and sources of additional information:

Quote:
Primer to Design Safe School Projects in Case of Terrorist Attacks (FEMA 428), Federal Emergency Management Agency, U.S Department of Homeland Security, Washington, DC, 2003
Code:
The focus of this publication is on the safety of school buildings and their occupants, and the economic losses and social disruption caused by building damage and destruction. The volume covers three main natural hazards that have the potential to result in unacceptable risk and loss: earthquakes, floods, and high winds. A companion volume, Primer to Design Safe School Projects in Case of Terrorist Attacks (FEMA 428), covers the manmade hazards of physical, chemical, biological, and radiological attacks.
Concern about terrorist attacks:
Quote:
Because of the relatively small size of most school buildings and the simplicity of design of the traditional school, with numerous internal walls, structural design is relatively simple and a well designed and constructed school should not collapse unless struck by a severe tornado or terrorist.
The system and component heading list is similar to that used for the building security assessment checklist in FEMA 426, Reference Manual to Mitigate Potential Terrorist Attacks Against Buildings


Considering the obsession with partial or complete new-build schools, in the UK, I do wonder if BSF (Building Schools for the Future), conform to international regulations quoted by Fema.

The company Parsons Brinckerhoff speak glowingly of BSF and FEMA: ( http://www.pbworld.com/news_events/publications/notes/pdf/09_2007.pdf and as an attachment below if link broken). As well as being involved in BSF, they also advertise on their website www.pbworld.com, for FEMA inspectors:

Quote:
When natural disasters strike, help is needed fast. Independent contractor inspectors work through PB Disaster Services with FEMA to help individuals and communities put the pieces back together.
For information on becoming a FEMA inspector and for general information, workshops, and news, please contact PB Disaster Services at 1-800-411-1177, or visit www.pbdisasterservices.com.


They are also a partner in Aura Learning Communities, Ltd. In the north-west of England. (see below; The Infrastructure of Life and Learning).

Also, note the following:

http://www.pbworld.com/news_events/publications/network/issue_60/60_18 _muir.asp

Quote:
Education Facilities
Building Schools for the Future: UK Initiative to Upgrade and Enhance School Facilities Via Prime Contracting
By Mark Muir, Bristol, UK, +44(0) 1179 339300, muirM@pbworld.com

PB is in position to be a prime mover in any of the Local Education Partnership scenarios that will unfold in the UK. The author provides a comprehensive overview of this new and ambitious approach to providing new and better educational facilities that will facilitate raising education standards. His aim is to help readers become better equipped to tap into and succeed in this expanding market.


Companies which provide military services, in schools, again.
http://moneyam.uk-wire.com/cgi-bin/articles/20080513074700NP249.html

VT Education and Skills (VTE&S) has shown an improvement in
profit. The division has expanded its work in providing education services
and has also exploited an opportunity to strengthen its position in supplying engineering training for the automotive industry. Further potential exists to
improve our market share in this sector. VTE&S continues to address new
Building Schools for the Future opportunities, concentrating on its role as a
specialist provider of education services.

Education and skills remains a challenging market but we
believe that VT is now recognised as a significant player in the sector and
can leverage this position to further develop the business. The planned
acquisition of the rest of Flagship Training, through the BVT JV agreement,
will make VTE&S the UK's biggest education and training provider.

http://www.vtplc.com/

Quote:
VT Group, the defence and support services company, welcomes the announcement by the UK Ministry of Defence today that it intends to proceed to the manufacturing stage in the project to build two aircraft carriers (CVF) for the Royal Navy.


Quote:
VT Education and Skills (VTE&S) have been appointed as the London Borough of Waltham Forest’s School Innovation and Improvement partner.

VTE&S will work closely with the council to make considerable differences in education and ultimately improve the life chances and employment opportunities for children and young people in the Borough.

Last year the Borough identified their three outcomes most in need of improvement, as health, education and unemployment. Over the next few years targets have been set to achieve substantial improvements in these priority areas.

From the 1st April 2008, more than 100 staff will transfer from the current provider EduAction to VTE&S.

Simon Withey, VTE&S Managing Director, commented: “VT is delighted to enhance its proven capability in education services by being awarded this contract in Waltham Forest. We are committed to working closely with the Council and local schools to help pupils and to raise educational standards in the Borough.”

Cllr Chris Robbins, Waltham Forest Cabinet Member for Children and Young People emphasised the Council’s support of VTE&S managing the Borough’s schools.

“VTE&S were selected as the Council’s preferred bidder following a robust and thorough tender process and Waltham Forest Council is happy with this decision, “ he commented.


www.pb-nc.com/news_events/publications/notes/pdf/09_2007.pdf



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Caz
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 13, 2008 12:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/1/49b8c9a2-32f4-11dc-a9e8-0000779fd2ac.html

Quote:
Acquisitions in the US mean that US defence work now accounts for 20 per cent of revenues and there is a huge potential market there. But Mr Lester says that in the medium term, VT will have three or four "legs" to its business: defence, education and waste/nuclear decomissioning.

"The link between them is that they are all engineering-based support services," he says.

The experience of bidding for PFI deals to build, operate and maintain patrol ships, refuelling aircraft and military training programmes, has given VT a strong bedrock of expertise in the sphere of public-private funding.

As a result it has been able to get involved in public-private partnership deals in sectors such as education.

VT has interests in the "building schools for the future" programme and has a strategic partnership with Greenwich Council and is part of a consortium with Costain, the construction company, in Lewisham.

It has also created a joint venture with Surrey County Council to outsource the provision of curricular services, provide facilities management and staff training at its schools.

However, VT's interest in education extends further: The group is already a leading provider of vocational training. But like Carter & Carter, the market leader in vocational training, which warned on profits last week, VT said the take-up of the government-sponsored Train To Gain programme has been slower than expected.

The group also provides careers guidance to young people in 19 local authorities in England as well as a scheme to help offenders get back on their feet in Kent.

With a firm bridgehead in education and training established, VT is looking at other areas where it can bring its private finance skills to bear. "The landfill directive issued 18 months ago created a big potential increase in waste processing," says Mr Lester.

The group is on the shortlist for a PFI deal for the provision of waste processing in Wakefield. Mr Lester also said the group was also looking at opportunities in decomissioning in the nuclear industry.

Designing timetables, processing waste and providing training to care assistants is a far cry from shipbuilding, and the transformation to a fully focused service company is almost complete.

With the government planning to build two new aircraft carriers, VT plans to create a joint venture with BAe Systems that would combine its shipyards in Portsmouth with BAe's in Glasgow to build the ships. In about three years time, Mr Lester says he hopes to spin off the joint venture.

From Devonport to Salisbury Plain, the military flag flies proudly over the South West of England and is by far the biggest employer in the region.

People who do not work directly for the three forces are often employed by companies that have been set up to take advantage of the military presence.

Companies like Westland in Yeovil build the kit, but just as the rest of the economy is moving away from manufacturing, military equipment companies are increasingly looking to provide long-term services rather than one-off equipment contracts in order to provide a reliable long-term income stream for investors.

VT Group, based in Portsmouth, has its roots in two shipbuilders, Vosper and Thornycroft, who both started out in the late 19th Century. The two companies merged in 1966, and twenty years later Vosper Thornycroft was floated on the London Stock Exchange.

At the end of the 1980s, the end of the Cold War and the subsequent reduction in spending on military hardware made ship building an unattractive industry. VT made the decision to diversify into more service-based businesses.

In the 1990s, Vosper Thornycroft tried to smooth out its turnover or as described by the Financial Times at the time: "to diversify out of lumpiness".

In 2002, Vosper Thornycroft changed its name to VT Group and currently the group is close to abandoning shipbuilding altogether.

With the Ministry of Defense planning to build two new aircraft carriers, VT plans to create a joint venture with BAe Systems that would merge its Naval shipyard in Portsmouth with BAe's facilities in Glasgow.

In about three years, VT hopes to spin off the joint venture, leaving it to focus exclusively on long-term service contracts.

VT Group is now worth just over £1bn and just 16 per cent of its operations are based around shipbuilding.

About 20 per cent of the group's operations are in the US, but VT's most important division, with turnover of about £436m a year, provides support services to the three UK services.

While private finance initiative deals in the healthcare and education sectors tend to get more press, the military has been by far the biggest user of PFI as a means to provide equipment and training using the private sector.

VT has developed significant expertise in PFI and has won innovative deals that mean it owns and maintains a series of patrol ships and fishery protection vessels on behalf of the Navy.

VT also provides flight training for all of the military services as part of a joint venture with Lockheed Martin and it's a key part of a radical contract to provide air refueling – the first PFI contract for equipment that will operate on the front line.

Expertise in the provision of training and the financial skills of managing PFI deals successfully has enabled the group to expand beyond its military roots. VT now has a division that is focused on providing education and training in the broader community.

VT provides career guidance services through local authorities and vocational training, especially in the fields of engineering, retail, care and hospitality and provides facilities management, curricular and training for all of the schools in Surrey through an 80 per cent owned joint venture with the Surrey council.
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letthemeatmadeiracake
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 02, 2010 10:56 pm    Post subject: FEMA For Kids: Books on Disaster Reply with quote

Books on Disaster for Kids/ Resources for Parents and Teachers courtesy of FEMA http://www.fema.gov/kids/tch_bks.htm

Listed in the bibliography of books on natural disasters such as floods, hurricanes and earthquakes (make that "natural" disasters) starring the usual suspects, dogs, bears and dragons, is this page-turner for 9-12 year olds:

Quote:
Terrorism (Crime, Justice and Punishment) by Austin Sarat and Ann Graham Gaines. Young adult. Focuses on terrorism in the Middle East and shows how it has affected America. Examines history, mentality and goals of terrorists.


I see we are well past the era of Little House on the Prairie. Sad

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Caz
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 23, 2010 8:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Similar for children here:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/education/2010/apr/09/violence-games-schools -education

Quote:
Primary school children are being shown images from the controversial video game Grand Theft Auto in a project designed to prevent them from becoming violent.

The 18-rated game, which allows players to kill prostitutes, has been criticised for glamorising crime and murder. But at eight schools in Merseyside, pupils aged between nine and 11 will be shown stills of scenes including a gun being fired through a car window and a man brandishing a sword, to stop them becoming "desensitised" to violent behaviour and teach them about its consequences in real life.
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