How Can I Make My School Safer?
The best way to make a school safer is to proactively address potential school security vulnerabilities that could expose the venue to criminal or violent behavior. Understanding the unique environment that each school represents, our school security methodology begins with the need for an open and friendly atmosphere while at the same time providing a safe and secure refuge in case of an emergency.
In order to achieve maximum school security, safety, and emergency capabilities can be divided into five key related areas:
- Security personnel
- Technical security systems
- Physical security measures
- Security plans, policies, and procedures
- Emergency preparedness
Once a thorough review and assessment of these school security domains have been conducted, a well-informed and objective evaluation of the administrative, procedural, and operational security controls can be provided. In addition to this knowledge, appropriate and practical countermeasures and solutions can be offered to discreetly enhance the level of school security while at the same time reduce the level of risk. These enhancements are not designed to alter the esthetics of the campus but to strengthen the school security programs and processes already in place.
Another key component of a successful school security program is the ability to identify, assess, and manage individuals within the academic population whose personal issues may evolve into an act of violence. When individuals exhibiting behaviors of concern are identified, they need to be brought to the immediate attention of threat assessment experts. Identifying this potential risk requires a broad and diverse set of skills that is best provided by both in-house and outsourced school security professionals.
An interdisciplinary investigative team with representatives from the areas of law enforcement, security, mental health, social work, and faculty is a best practice for this group. One of the most effective ways to improve the school security for students, parents, teachers, and staff is to identify and mitigate many potential threats early enough to minimize the likelihood of school violence.