A heightened awareness of the risks schools face has caused many San Antonio school administrators to review their security protocols. This starts with a school security survey and risk assessment. Administrators must juggle many issues and be aware of all risks when creating this plan. The best way to complete a school security survey is to get the advice of experienced security integrators at the start of the process. Security integrators improve school security surveys by providing an electronic technology assessment of all campus risks.
Critical factors in a school security survey and risk assessment
Outside consultation is often needed in a school security survey. It can be difficult for those inside the school to see where their risks lie. They also may not be familiar with all the existing risk response protocols. A security survey should look at low, medium and high level risks. It should also account for their probability and their existing response resources.
Low impact risks (high probability)
Basic vandalism is an example of a low impact risk. It won’t result in injury or loss of life but can be costly. This is due to an extremely high probability of it happening.
Resources to manage such risks should be able to control high volumes of incidents. Deterrence should be a key focus. Security cameras are often the solution as low-risk crimes are ones of opportunity and are easily deterred.
Medium impact risks (moderate probability)
A medium impact risk would be something like a fight between students. It needs to be stopped quickly as there’s a potential of injury.About one in four high school students (24%) report being involved in a fight in 2017, but campus fights aren’t necessarily a daily occurence. This creates a moderate probability of occurrence.
The critical focus for this should be response time. How quickly do current protocols allow adults to break up fights between students? Critical communications can get security to the scene faster. Are there areas of higher risk, like cafeterias, hallways or gymnasiums? Cameras can act as a deterrent.
High impact risks (low probability)
High impact risks almost always have a low probability. These incidents lead to an immediate threat of fatality. An active shooter situation is the common example.
Many schools have minimal resources for dealing with a high-risk event. They may rely on existing access control, video surveillance and critical communications systems. Specialized equipment like shooter detection technology is often not in use.
Evaluating and planning for all eventualities is a big task. Administrators should take on outside help for best results. Consider bringing on an experienced security integrator when developing a school security survey. Starting with an electronic technology assessment will give you the research you need to best develop a plan for your campus security. A quality security integrator will also offer to design and install an electronic technology solution that fills your unique needs while maintaining security best practices.
Using an electronic technology assessment to supplement a survey
General risk assessments typically focus on campus security challenges and opportunities. Technology may not be reviewed extensively during this process. This is where many schools miss an opportunity. An electronic technology assessment highlights issues and comes up with solutions.
A risk assessment may note that there is a blind spot that is resulting in an increased risk of vandalism. An electronic technology assessment would question why there’s no camera there. It would discuss how to eliminate the blind spot. Is there no power source for one? A wireless camera may be an option. Or could an existing camera angle be adjusted or expanded?
The goal of an integrator doing an electronic security assessment is to use technology to solve big-picture issues. They create security systems that work as one cohesive unit. Some even add in high-demand options like shooter detection software. Integrators streamline a school’s response to the risks facing them now. The best integrators create scalable systems for the dangers they may face in the future.