LIVE @ ISTE 2024: Exclusive Coverage

Administrators take top role in security


PoliceOfficerClassroomEveryone involved with our schools has a role in keeping our campuses safe and secure. That includes teachers, staff, parents, students, and law enforcement.

But it is the administrators, with the day-to-day responsibilities, that can make the largest positive impact.  They need to take the lead in providing an environment where teachers can teach and children can learn without fear.

Here are six tips I have for administrators to help make their schools more secure:

•    Make security a top priority.  Pay attention to the best practices, policies, and procedures in place on other campuses.

•    Build strong relationships with your local law enforcement officials.  If your school does not have a regularly assigned officer, ask the supervisors at the local police or sheriff’s office to make an assignment.  Then work closely with the officer to help familiarize staff and students with emergency and security drills.

•    Encourage parents to get involved in their children’s safety.  Help them to promote an open environment in which the kids feel comfortable talking about their fears and learn how to resolve conflict without violence.  And remind them that if they have firearms at home, to keep them properly locked, stored, and accounted for.

•    Students, more than any other group, know what’s really happening on a campus.  So get them proactively involved in their own safety.  One option is to start a hotline that they can call to anonymously report suspicious activities.

•    Know exactly who is on your campus.  Have all visitors and vendors check into the office and show identification.  There are visitor management systems that tie directly into computers at the federal Department of Justice that can quickly identify registered sex offenders and others with criminal records.

•    Look for ways to finance security measures.  Unfortunately, properly securing a campus is not inexpensive.  It may require reallocating budgets to include surveillance cameras, access control, and other measures.  However, there are a number of grants available to help pay for security upgrades.  Check the web sites of the U.S. Department of Education and your own state’s department to get more information.

PatrickFielPatrick Fiel is public safety advisor for ADT Security Services and a former executive director of school security for Washington, D.C. Public School System. He also served 22 years in the Army Military Police Corps, where his responsibilities included day-to-day security operations at the West Point Military Academy. During his time with ADT, Fiel has conducted more than 100 television, radio, newspaper, and magazine interviews as a public and school safety expert.

Follow Patrick Fiel on Twitter.

Sign up for our K-12 newsletter

Newsletter: Innovations in K12 Education
By submitting your information, you agree to our Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

Laura Ascione

Want to share a great resource? Let us know at submissions@eschoolmedia.com.

New Resource Center
Explore the latest information we’ve curated to help educators understand and embrace the ever-evolving science of reading.
Get Free Access Today!

"*" indicates required fields

Hidden
Hidden
Hidden
Hidden
Hidden
Hidden
Hidden
Hidden
Hidden
Hidden
Email Newsletters:

By submitting your information, you agree to our Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

IT SchoolLeadership

Your source for IT solutions and innovations to support school-wide success.
Weekly on Wednesday.

  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Please enter your work email address.
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

eSchool News uses cookies to improve your experience. Visit our Privacy Policy for more information.