7 Security Measures for Schools

School Slow Traffic Warning SignWhilst schools are a place of learning, they are also at risk of potential crimes and therefore robust security measures need to be put in place. Here, we discuss 7 security measures for schools. 

Have access control 

Access control measures are a great way to ensure the flow of people into the school is limited. Having keypads at entrances to buildings that require a pin code or an ID badge can help keep track of who is in a building at any one time. Access control cards can also be assigned to students as well as staff. This will create even greater control of who is on-site at any given moment.

Use signs effectively 

It has been proven that barriers, gates, and other perimeter security measures can be complemented with the effective use of signs. These signs can be used to not only deter criminals (For example, by installing signs that state CCTV cameras are in action on-site) but, can also highlight exits in cases of emergency, keeping everyone safe and aware of what to do in an emergency.

Ensure the perimeter is secure 

It is vital that the entire perimeter of a school is protected. Perimeter security measures such as barriers, gates, and turnstiles can all be used effectively to ensure there are no easy access points. Assess the perimeter on a regular basis to check there are do damaged areas to the perimeter. For example, check for any holes in fences or any weak points that need to be repaired. 

Try and install metal gates and fences where possible as although they are more costly, they will last longer when properly maintained.

Consider having a gated entrance, ideally one that requires keypad or swipe card entry. Although during peak times such as the start or end of the day, the gate may have to be left open, having the added gate protection can help staff feel safe when they are leaving work after the children have gone home.

Although securing the perimeter is vital, whatever is installed needs to be able to unlock in case of emergencies when an alarm is triggered, so bear this in mind.

CCTV

Install CCTV in key areas, for example where high-value items such as computers and money are kept. Having this extra layer of security helps protect the higher risk areas. Although the CCTV footage may not be reviewed regularly, it is invaluable to consult after an incident such as theft, fires or vandalism. 

Keep track of visitors 

Ensure all visitors naturally have to walk past the reception of the school. Try and limit the places on the school grounds that a visitor can access without temporary access cards. Keeping access limited will help stop unauthorised personnel from being able to wander around the school site.

Install security lighting 

During the colder, darker months, it is always a good idea to install security lighting through the site. Especially near playgrounds and footpaths to ensure accidents and trips are avoided and the staff and students feel safe walking around outside.

Carry out regular risk assessments

Security requirements will inevitably change over time. More security solutions will be available and the needs of the school may alter. Therefore, you should assign someone to be in charge of assessing the site. Alternatively, you can hire a security company to come in to carry out the risk assessment. The benefit of using someone external is the fresh eyes and new perspective they can provide.

Enforcing these measures will help create a safe environment that will benefit the staff and students alike. By have strictly enforced security measures like the ones discussed above ensures that learning can take place without being disruptive, there is higher morale, less cost in the long run as theft and other criminal damage will be reduced. In addition to this, schools that can be clearly seen putting safety as a key priority will gain a great reputation which will benefit the school for years to come.

What’s Next? 

For more information on how Gateway Automation can help keep your premises secure, please contact us on 01522 682255 for a free, no-obligation quotation and feasibility survey to assess your perimeter security equipment. 

How access control equipment could help schools to be outstanding

how access control equipment can help schools to be outstandingOfsted visits are as stressful as it gets for school teachers and meeting their ever-changing criteria is a common source of headaches. While security equipment is by no means a fool-proof method of guaranteeing a positive outcome with Ofsted inspectors, there is evidence it could impress them.

Ofsted’s job is outlined as ‘inspecting and regulating to achieve excellence in the care of children and young people’. While Ofsted does not outline specific standards in their guidebooks regarding security, they do require that schools protect “their pupils, staff and property”.

The Ofsted inspector’s recommendation document helps schools and teachers to understand what aspects they find impressive at other schools around the UK. It highlights examples of security, in particular managing the follow of children and visitors using access control equipment.

Besides impressing Ofsted inspectors, access control equipment can provide some very practical benefits to schools. They can ensure that students stay safely inside the school buildings during the day, they can track staff entry and exit times, prevent truancy and prevent access to unwanted visitors. Access control equipment can include intercoms, keypads, cards, fobs or even turnstiles all of which can improve safety levels on-site.

For many schools, access control equipment is high on their agenda, but cost can often be a barrier due to shrinking budgets. Here at Gateway Automation we can help you find the most cost-effective option for your school while maintaining high standards of safety and control.

Are you interested in finding out more? Gateway Automation provide a range of perimeter security systems to help educational sites to secure their premises and also provides nationwide servicing and repairs to gates, barriers and other perimeter security equipment. To find out more, please contact us on 01522 68255 or take a look at our brochure which can be viewed here: http://www.gatewayautomation.co.uk/brochure/.

How bollards can help prevent school parking problems

How bollards can help prevent school parking problemsAcross the UK, nurseries, infant schools, junior, primary and secondary schools all share one thing in common – parking problems. Parents seeking to save time on the school run by parking as closely to school entry points as possible are causing headaches for schools and local residents alike, leading to repeated calls for parents to fall in line, which seemingly fall on deaf ears.

None more so is the problem highlighted in that of busy, growing, successful schools where the number of drop-off and pick-ups increase year on year. The growing traffic to the schools means that parents are in even more of a rush to drop off their kids and do it in as little time as possible. This leads them to park in unathorised areas such as on verges and pathways and in areas that cause road blockages, obstruct traffic and block footpaths for pedestrians.

Despite the best efforts of many schools, launching safety campaigns, contacting parents by email, phone and by post as well as verbally warning repeat offenders – they have had no luck in easing the problem. Many even find that despite having double yellow lines painted and sign posts placed to warn drivers, the problem persists.

So, what can schools do to get tough on illegal parking? One key way that schools can clamp down on this problem is to consider installing bollards. Bollards such as the GA7276H operate with an electrohydraulic mechanism which means they can be raised and lowered according to need. So, if there times when, say trade vehicles, require parking by the school then you can allow them access. During times that no access is needed the bollards can be raised to prevent unauthorized parking and send a strong message to parents.

If your school is experiencing these types of problems, then please do not hesitate to get in touch to discuss your options. We offer a value for money service with well-engineered quality bollards manufactured to your specific requirements. For total peace of mind, we offer nationwide maintenance contracts on our own bollards and on existing perimeter security equipment made by other manufacturers. To find out more please call us on 01522 682 255 or click here to arrange a callback.

How to keep schools safe and secure with access control equipment

How to keep schools safeSchools are very busy environments with lots of pedestrian and vehicular traffic throughout the day, something which presents a challenge in terms of security. How can schools ensure that their sites remain safe from crime and under control with so much activity? Here we look at the role that access control equipment can play.

According to Ofsted guidelines, schools are required to provide a safe and secure environment for children to reside in. This means that it is essential for schools to find ways to secure the entry points of their sites. Whether this is achieved through access control equipment like intercoms, keypads, cards or fobs, or by installing a turnstile system allowing staff to check credentials, it should be high on the agenda when looking at how to meet their expected requirements.

It’s not only their pupils that schools are obliged to find ways to protect, either. Many schools today hold lots of important confidential information as well as highly valuable equipment such as computers, printers, photocopiers, TV’s, medical supplies and much more. The relatively low-key attitude that many schools have taken in the past to site security means that walk-in-thieves and trespassers view them as easy targets. Access control equipment strategically placed can help to shut down access in certain areas where high value equipment is stored, making it more difficult to access, at least for those who are unauthorized to do so.

Many businesses and organizations turn to us for access control equipment as a means of recording attendance, both among staff and among pupils. By installing fobs or key card systems at strategic points through a school you can ensure that you have up to date records of who is on your site and when they arrive and leave. This is a proven way to not only reduce absenteeism and truancy but also to help with fire safety guidelines.

Access control equipment may be a relatively new concept for schools, however in uncertain times, it can provide pupils, staff and parents peace of mind that no unauthorized visitors are making their way onto the site to cause harm.

Gateway Automation provides a range of products including access control equipment to help businesses and individuals secure their sites against crime. We also provide nationwide servicing and repairs to gates, barriers and other perimeter security equipment. To find out more please call us on 01522 682255.