Owing to rapid growth in the education sector, schools have become commonplace in all nations. Schools today are not just institutions providing learning to your children. There is more to running a school and most of the corporate culture and policies are applicable to them. With growing amounts of vandalism and violence reported in schools, security is one such concern which needs a definite highlighting. The safety of the students becomes a major worry for the parents and a responsibility for the school authorities.
Break-ins are the most common crimes occurring in schools in addition to kidnapping, contraband drug possession and illegal weapon possession. Studies say that in recent economically difficult times, school break-ins occur for purposes of theft. Construction commodities or workshop materials left in poorly lit open areas inside the school compounds are also targeted. When we look at these issues, we need to know what steps need to be taken from a security point of view to prevent break-ins. Here are a few tested and researched measures:
- Security guards who are well qualified and trained to be ready for action need to be employed. During times of unrest, police officers can also be stationed. Research shows that children feel more protected than panicky in their presence.
- Security cameras are a must in all the regions of the school and student movement needs to be monitored. And a surveillance team should be able to react quickly to suspicious activity involving intruders.
- Maintain a main gate and direct all incoming and outgoing traffic towards the gate. Maintain logs of workers, contractors and servicemen entering the premises. A necessary escorting facility should be made available.
- In preschools and charter schools where the student population is limited, criminal opportunity thrives. Install doors that open only from the inside. Have panic buttons in places known to the teachers. Train the staff to recognize any intrusion and report to security.
- Identify locales that may be vulnerable and implement cheap yet effective monitoring systems like electronic cards for parking lots, visitor passes with social security numbers etc.
- Maintain a properly lit premise to counter thefts.
Taking these measures aid in maintaining the security in schools. In case there is a break-in, contact your security service provider for immediate dispatch of additional guards. If the reason for break-ins or unrest is dangerous, trained guards can always advise taking the issue to the police department. There are security service providers who offer well vetted and trained security guards in addition to monitoring systems. If you are a parent, ensure your children go to a school prepared to handle break-ins and other similar incidents responsibly. If you are a school administrator, take the above mentioned measures and employ security packages to safeguard your students and premises.