Increasing School Security to Keep Students and Staff Safe
December 26th, 2018
The list of school shootings and attacks, unfortunately, continues to grow longer, and more and more parents become even more apprehensive about sending their children to school each day. Therefore, it is essential that schools institute more security features to help lessen the chances of an attack and provide some much-needed protection for the students and staff.
The unfortunate truth when it comes to securing our schools is the fact that in doing so, we may begin to lose some of our personal freedoms. Security checkpoints are used in airports, sporting events, concerts, and even some hospitals, and are becoming more prevalent in schools as well.
In addition to the security checkpoints, many buildings also have setups that limit the access people have to certain areas, and it effectively keeps people confined to the lobby area. From elevator controlled entry to manned reception desks, there are many ways buildings are restricting access.
Schools will need to become more advanced and sophisticated and employ these same technologies to keep children and staff safe. One of the biggest ways to maintain a safe environment is by limiting access and establishing perimeters that protect the people inside the building.
Barriers in a Controlled Entrance
The next line of defense for schools should be barriers placed in the controlled entrance. After identifying visitors, a sally port should be employed. A sally port, or gated enclosure, is where a person goes after being identified. They are essentially moving from one secured location to the next.
Construction of the Buildings
Next, we need to take a closer look at the construction of the school buildings. New school constructions should employ newer technologies that provide an added layer of defense for the staff, children, and administration. Older schools should also be retrofitted with the same technology to secure the facility.
Key access cards, for example, offer a less than desirable level of security because these are as reliable as a traditional key. Anyone can steal one of these cards and ultimately gain access into restricted areas.
With construction, we also find a rising number of fraudulent contractors trying to take these security jobs that are being funded by the government.
While all these security features seem as if they will cost a lot of money, we need to allocate funds to provide much-needed security for our schools. Even switching out the old doors and hardware can be a good step in the right direction and it doesn’t come with the high overhead costs and project management.
Security in our schools is a problem that needs to be addressed, and current layouts, security measures, and buildings need to be analyzed so we can come up with a more realistic plan that will protect children and staff.
When properly implemented, these more sophisticated methods of defense will significantly improve the overall level of security within the schools and will provide greater peace of mind for parents sending their children off to school every day.