School Security

The level of physical security required to maintain building integrity, as well as personal security, must be assessed constantly, in order to lower our schools' vulnerability to accidents and violent behaviors both internal and external. Different strategies will be required to address needs specific buildings, situations, and grade levels.

 

Facility Safety Inspection Checklist:

Appendix “E” to this Safety Plan is a Facility Safety Inspection Checklist. It  is directed that all Building Level Safety Committees, at a minimum of annually, use this or an equivalent checklist, to review the safety aspects of their buildings. This survey will be conducted with the assistance of police, fire, and building committee personnel, considering physical design, health and safety policies, and in-place emergency procedures. The completion of this annual requirement will be documented in the Building Level Safety Committees meeting minutes with a summary being provided to the Buildings & Grounds Department. It is recommended that this assessment be the mission of at least one of the Building Level Safety Committee Meetings. Using the conclusions of that survey, Building Level Safety Plans will be updated as necessary.

 

Possible considerations while you are conducting comprehensive security assessment reviews:

  1. The use of School Resource Officers, who may be provided by local law enforcement. SROs often provide law enforcement, law-related counseling, and law-related education to students, faculty, and staff. Continuity of officers within individual schools should be encouraged so that students and SROs develop rapport.
  2. Consider seeking one or more probation officers for use on campus to help supervise and counsel students. This would be especially appropriate for high schools with a significant caseload of juveniles on probation.
  3. Utilize paid, trained personnel hired specifically to assist teachers and administrators in monitoring student behavior and activities. Continuity of monitors within schools should be encouraged to facilitate good rapport with students. The number of monitors used should be based on the number of students, the extent of problems at the school, and the space and layout of school grounds.
  4. Encourage screened and trained parents/guardians and other volunteers to provide monitoring of students. Ensure volunteers have adequate training and guidelines outlining their duties.
  5. Develop and enforce restrictions about student loitering in parking lots, hallways, bathrooms, and other areas. Publish restrictions in the student handbook/code of conduct.
  6. Consider the use of metal detectors only in special circumstances to deter weapons on campus.
  7. Adopt policies for conducting searches for weapons and drugs. Publish policies in the student handbook/code of conduct.
  8. Require visitors to sign in and sign out at the school office and to wear visible visitors' passes. Post prominent signs at all school entrances instructing visitors where to sign in and out. Publish the policy in the student handbook/code of conduct.
  9. Encourage school personnel to greet strangers on campus and direct them to sign in if they have not. Also, instruct school personnel to report visitors who have not signed in.
  10. Require students and staff to carry with them and/or wear their school photo IDs during school and at all school-related activities.
  11. Establish a closed campus policy that prohibits students from leaving campus during lunch.
  12. Establish a cooperative relationship with law enforcement and owners of adjacent properties to the school that allow for joint monitoring of student conduct during school hours. Encourage neighboring residents and businesses to report all criminal activity and unusual incidents. Establish a protocol within the school to handle calls from the neighborhood.
  13. Consider providing and making use of alarm, intercom, cell phone, building paging, two-way radio, and mounted and hand-held camera monitoring systems on buses and school campuses.
  14. Develop a school bus rider attendance checklist for each bus and use it daily.
  15. Consider the need for employing outside security personnel during school functions.
  16. Patrol/monitor school grounds, especially in areas where students tend to congregate such as parking lots, hallways, stairs, bathrooms, cafeterias, and schoolyards.

NOTE: Please understand that manpower and budget restraints may have a bearing on many aspects of Health & Safety Programs. These are issues that must be taken into consideration as we continue to advance and update our health & safety posture.