Superstorm Sandy has left schools closed across a number of East Coast states, and the Consortium for School Networking took the opportunity to remind school leaders that planning for unexpected events like this should be part of their regular routine.

"For the vast majority of school districts that missed the direct hit of the bullet, now is the time to really think through what you do in times of crisis, whether that's a natural disaster or some other crisis," said Keith Krueger, CEO of the nonprofit consortium.

A school's data and network is at the heart of many different things, from payroll to electrical systems. And technology leaders will need to figure out how to make them available during times of disaster.

The consortium released a 10-step guide for school technology recovery several years ago. Based on the experiences of schools that weathered Hurricane Katrina and other disasters, these are the first 10 things schools should do.

  1. Contact recovery leaders at the school, district or state level
  2. Create an Emergency Operations Center
  3. Contact staff and hold a meeting with those who are available
  4. Communicate with utility and telecommunications providers, staff and families
  5. Contact FEMA and the district's insurance company
  6. Create a list of everything that's destroyed, damaged or missing and take photos
  7. Contact critical technology vendors
  8. Compensate employees by getting payroll running again
  9. Capture critical data from damaged servers
  10. Clean up

Have any tips to add that worked for your school district? Let us know in the comments.

Tanya Roscorla  |  Managing Editor

Tanya Roscorla covers education technology in the classroom, behind the scenes and on the legislative agenda. Likes: Experimenting in the kitchen, cooking up cool crafts, reading good books.