It’s been one year since the tragic events at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut left 26 people dead, most of them young children. In the last year, school security has been a topic across the nation, and the world. With money being allocated in budgets to improve the security, how much is done and what’s left to do?
As a distributor of security products, IDN, Inc. has been a source for products to provide solutions for lock downs. Many of these products have been discussed here on our blog, and many have been promoted in our national ads. There are thousands of products on the marketplace that can be implemented into a school building to make it secure. Of course, all efforts are pointless if the door doesn’t latch or the lock doesn’t function properly. Locksmiths who service schools, below is a quick summary to help guide you during your walk through.
There are many solutions for a classroom to be locked. The recommendation is to place a lock on the classroom door that does not require an exterior key to lock the door. If a teacher can lock the door from the inside through a button or thumb turn, a key, or a fob, this will decrease the chance of exposing a teacher to risk by entering the hall to lock the door. Locks installed that automatically lock when closed also work well.
Are the doors on classrooms solid? Add a peep hole so the teacher can identify who is on the outside before granting access. This also includes doors to closets and bathrooms. It’s best to use one where someone in the hall cannot tell if someone is looking through the hole.
Surveillance Cameras are great, but better when monitored throughout the day, all day. They are proven to be a strong deterrent when an administrator or security guard can view who is about to request access to the building before they get to the door.
Often schools practice Fire Drills, Tornado or Earthquake drills (depending on where they are located), but an active shooting drill should be implemented. Every teacher, staff member, and administrator needs to know instinctively what to do, how to react, and do so clearly when an emergency strikes. Assuming it won’t happen isn’t an answer. Practice, Practice, Practice – both with knowledge and without.
Although it has been a year, and a lot of new products for school security have been released by many manufacturers, many schools are still in need of better security. School shootings have been in the news since Columbine. Lock the doors is a start, but a lot more can be done to prevent an intruder. Contact your local IDN Branch for guidance on what product solution works with the budget at hand.
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Kathleen Kempf is the Marketing Manager at IDN-H. Hoffman.