Ways To Improve School Safety and Security to Keep Teachers and Students Safe
Over 1.4 million criminal incidents took place in educational facilities over the course of the 2019-2020 school year. These crimes included acts of violence, drugs, theft, and other potential hazards to student and staff safety. Approximately 5% of school-aged children reported a fear of being harmed on school grounds in the same year.
School safety and security are a primary concern throughout our communities. Children, administrators, and their families deserve to feel safe inside our educational facilities and on school grounds.
There are numerous technological programs, security measures, and policies and procedures that can improve school safety and security. We also explore creative ways that school administration, teachers, and students can get involved in creating a safe, secure learning environment.
Security Measures to Improve School Safety
School administrators are responsible for ensuring that educational facilities are as safe as possible. This requires schools to implement procedures, policies, and emergency protocols.
A safe school requires that the building’s perimeters remain secured. Implement safety procedures, including designated drop-off locations, parking lots, and restricted points of entry.
Limited Access Points
There should be a designated door for staff and student entry. All outside doors should be checked regularly to ensure they are locked.
Surveillance Monitoring Inside and Out
Video surveillance has the potential to reduce the likelihood of criminal occurrences on school grounds. Video surveillance should be implemented inside and outside the school.
Create a Healthy School Environment for All Students
One of the most important ways to improve school safety is for administrators to work to provide a healthy, safe, and welcoming environment for all students. The potential for an act of mass violence is an ongoing threat to schools throughout the nation.
Mental Illness and Acts of Mass Violence
Mental illness plays a critical role in nearly all acts of mass violence. Students have been known to override security measures. Providing students and staff with an ongoing and reliable support system can connect them with the resources needed to prevent a catastrophe.
Policies to Combat Bullying
Develop policies that ensure educational environments protect students from physical violence, verbal harassment, and all forms of bullying.
Positive Student/Teacher Relationships
Teachers should spend time with students and encourage them to discuss issues that are prevalent in their lives. Healthy relationships with teachers and administrators can have a positive impact on the student’s overall wellness. These relationships can also provide educators with inside information about at-risk students.
Encourage Students to Speak Up
Students play an active role in creating a positive, welcoming, and safe school environment. Educate students on the devastating effects of bullying, harassment, and violence.
Anonymous Tip Reporting Tools
Improve school safety by encouraging students to speak up and providing them with adequate resources to make anonymous reports. Students should be encouraged to report any and all threatening behavior, including verbal harassment, physical violence, and/or bullying. Our school safety app allows users to provide anonymous tips to administrators and law enforcement.
Encourage students to become school peacemakers and effectively intervene in the event that they witness a peer being bullied.
Combat Social Isolation
All students deserve to feel important and develop meaningful relationships. Encourage students to involve socially isolated students. Social isolation is not the same as physical isolation. A student could be surrounded by peers but lack any valuable connections. These students may feel invisible, alienated, and unimportant.
Risks of Social Isolation
Students who suffer from a lack of positive social and emotional connections are at risk of depression and self-harm. These individuals may also be at an increased risk of committing acts of mass violence.
Social isolation is emotionally damaging. These students often feel lonely and may suffer from mental health issues. A lack of social relationships can result in low self-esteem, poor self-worth, and even feelings of anger/resentment.
Organize Clubs to Improve Social Wellness
Organize after-school programs, groups, and other activities that could potentially get socially isolated students more involved.
Improve Threat Identification
Training all teachers and students to identify potentially dangerous threats could save lives. Regularly remind students and teachers to of warning signs and indicators that an individual could be at risk of committing a violent crime. A school safety app should provide a threat identification and management feature to help school personnel and law enforcement take appropriate action.
Teach Staff and Students to Watch for The Following Signs:
- Extreme Aggression
- Obsession w/Violence, Guns, and/or Acts of Mass Violence
- Any Form of Violent Threat (Verbal, Written, or Gestural)
- Social Isolation
Encourage all staff and students to report this information to administrators, law enforcement, and/or an internal threat assessment committee.
Prepare Staff and Students to Respond to Crisis
Create a safer school environment by preparing students and staff to respond to any crisis. Knowing how to respond to these disasters has the potential to minimize casualties.
Create a Plan
Schools should review their current emergency protocol and develop a plan to respond to any potential incident.
Practice Active Shooter Drills
Improve school safety by training students on the best way to respond to an active shooter situation.
Invest in SaferWatch Solutions
Our safety app allows students and teachers to feel safe in the classroom. Advanced technology, including surveillance monitoring systems, communication tools, and incident reporting systems are crucial for protecting students and staff.
Alyssa’s Law Compliant School Safety Solutions By SaferWatch App:
- Incident Management
- Mass Notification System
- Mobile Panic Alert System
- Threat Assessment
- Tip & Threat Reporting
Contact SaferWatch Today to Learn About Our Solutions or Advocate On Our Behalf
SaferWatch Solutions provide schools with the resources required to maintain a safe, healthy learning environment. Our mobile application provides threat assessment, monitoring, and communication tools. Reach out to SaferWatch today for more information about our advanced solutions to improve school security.