Even the most vigilant campus is not immune to attempts at criminal activity that threaten school security. NYC schools must consider new, innovative ways to clear the hurdles involved with achieving a more secure campus. Following through on the commitment to do this will require effort and investment, but here are five easy ways to get started.
1. Perform a school security walkthrough.
Before you can identify the solutions, you must identify the problems. This is done by conducting a walk-through of the school site and assessing the security of each entry and exit point. Is each exit-only door clearly labeled? Are “staff only” doors labeled as such? When you approach the student entry gates, take note of what time of day they are locked – should they be locked earlier, and who watches over each one? And what are the locking systems on each of these entries and exits? Could there be a benefit to automating those locks electronically? These are the questions to ask as you perform a school security assessment at your NYC campus.
2. Identify foot traffic patterns.
After entries and exits have been assessed, it’s time to examine the most routine foot traffic patterns throughout the campus. Naturally, the beginning and ending of the regular school day will have the most foot traffic at the main entry and exit points. During those times of day, those portals may be in need of additional security forces – both live and remote – in order to monitor who is coming and going. During the hours that staff and students are expected to be in class, remote video monitoring can watch over foot traffic to identify any unusual patterns and alert an administrator so action can be taken.
3. Consider access control.
Access control systems are electronic entry portals that can be installed at each entry point on campus. In school security applications, access control systems are designed to grant entry only to verified students who can swipe a credential (such as a student ID card) at the portal for secure entry. When access control systems are installed at every entry point, then mid-day traffic can be monitored more easily as well. Again: Remote video monitoring can assist with identifying people who arrive mid-day, and the access control system can act as a visitor management tool to deny entry to unauthorized visitors. With today’s school security challenges, NYC schools must consider additional technology as a solution.
4. Plan for lockdowns.
School lockdowns are often the last resort in a possible emergency because they are complicated to implement. Administrators have to quickly spread themselves to each entry point on campus to manually lock gates, and communicate with each teacher to manually lock the doors in each classroom, gym, lunchroom, library, and lab. Rather than relying on this outdated method of school security lockdown, NYC campuses should consider an automated lockdown solution that allows authorized administrators to remotely lock down entries electronically. One solution that allows them to do that is Ruvna, a school safety application that can account for the entire student body during the event while also allowing staff to communicate with each about the emergency in one central platform. It’s a superior solution that leaves clipboards and pens where the belong – in the past.
5. Surveillance, surveillance, surveillance.
Entries and exits are no longer the only areas of a campus that require video surveillance. To achieve and maintain school security, NYC campuses must have cameras installed in a variety of other points throughout the site: every stairwell, every hallway, the front office, the gymnasium and other large common areas. The cameras should be installed where there will be clear lines of sight so that any potential incident is captured. And of course, surveillance should also be a priority around exterior perimeters so that visitors can be monitored while approaching the access control stations. We also recommend remote video monitoring, a service that virtually multiplies your on-the-ground security force by remotely watching your live video feed and alerting administrators to possible breaches immediately.
These are some first steps that can be implemented as a campus sets goals for better school security. NYC schools that would like to learn more should contact POM Technologies for a thorough campus security assessment.
About POM Technologies
Peace Of Mind Technologies is a security system installation and monitoring company that has delivered site-specific, cost-effective security solutions to facilities throughout the greater New York Metro area since 2002. Our modern-day school security solutions are unmatched in NYC. Contact us at (212) 688-2767 or firstname.lastname@example.org to request a free security analysis, or reach out via the contact form below.
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