For most school systems in Maryland, this week represents the second week of school and the first full week. School safety is growing even more important with every day, and two of the most critical times of the year is right after schools reopen and before they close for the summer vacation. Here are some ways to ensure school safety this academic year and every year after.
Update Emergency Plans
Fire drills are one of the most valuable ways to test the emergency preparedness of your school. Unfortunately, as we all know too well, fires aren’t the only types of emergencies that can affect our schools. A straightforward way to ensure school safety is to begin updating emergency plans. In some states, you are obligated to do this; however, such a requirement is not uniform across the nation.
Discuss School Safety
Teachers, staff, and administrators typically hold planning meetings before the official start of the year. During these meetings, it’s critical to discuss how you can go about improving your school safety and security measures. Training seminars may be needed throughout the year, especially on professional development days. While new pieces of technology and equipment such as cameras and metal detectors make a difference, they are not infallible. Thus, all of your teachers need to know how to react in a situation that calls for them to keep calm and protect their students.
Revise Visitor Policies
What is your current visitor policy like? Closely monitoring access control and visitor sign-in and sign-out procedures can also help keep your school a safer place. The first few weeks back after the summer are even busier and noisier than usual, which is why even the best surveillance technology needs to be complemented with highly vigilant staff members.
Consider the Authorities
Another way to ensure school safety is to think about your school’s relationship with local authorities. School resource officers (SROs) often work for local police departments and can help protect your campus. However, that leads to several other questions with complicated answers, namely regarding training. How will they interact with teachers, students, and parents? How will they respond to a crisis? One of the easiest ways to find answers to those questions is to build stronger relationships with the officers that will respond to incidents through constant conversations about school safety.
Trust the Professionals at ARK Systems
Located in Columbia, Maryland, ARK Systems provides unsurpassed quality and excellence in the security industry, from system design all the way through to installation. We handle all aspects of security with local and remote locations. With over 30 years in the industry, ARK Systems is an experienced security contractor. Trust ARK to handle your most sensitive data storage, surveillance, and security solutions.