Winter's over: It's Severe Weather Awareness Week

Emergency management officials are urging Minnesota schools to review plans for protecting students from tornadoes during this week's Severe Weather Awareness Week.

Tornado season coming soon: What you need to know
Previously: Storm Ready: Is the Twin Cities prepared?

State law requires schools to hold one severe weather drill each year. And Sarah Stalker, a meteorologist with Hennepin County Emergency Management, says school officials need to designate safe spots in buildings away from windows and wide open hallways.

"Schools are very pretty to look at. But one downfall of that is they're not necessarily designed for sheltering for severe weather," she said, and recommended sending students to restrooms or windowless classrooms during severe weather: "Try to put as many walls between you and the outside. The most interior part of the school without windows, without long hallways with doors at the end."

The National Weather Service recently certified Hopkins Public Schools as the state's first StormReady school district. Each of the district's nine buildings has a crisis management team that's trained to react to severe weather

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