10 Practical Back-to-School Safety Tips for Parents

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As the end of summer draws near, back-to-school activities start taking priority in most homes throughout the Bay Area. Part of those activities should include familiarizing yourself with the safety and security of your child’s school and learning how the school handles emergencies.

ASK YOUR CHILD Your child may be your best source for understanding and improving school safety, so ask if there are areas in or around the school that make him or her feel unsafe, and ask if he or she has seen or heard any of the other students doing things that makes him or her feel uneasy. If your child is not comfortable reporting any concerns to a teacher, make them feel comfortable coming to you.
VISITORS – AUTHORIZED AND UNAUTHORIZED Check with the school if there are sign-in and sign-out procedures in place for all visitors, what type of ID is required, and if visitors are monitored during their visit as well as required to wear a visitor badge and hand it back afterwards. Also, check how the school handles unwanted visitors.
ACCESS TO BUILDINGS AND CLASSROOMS Find out if there are any unmonitored doors or windows that will allow outsiders to access any of the school buildings or classrooms unannounced. Also find out if those doors can be locked from the outside while still allowing your child to get out quickly and safely in case of an emergency.
SURVEILLANCE CAMERAS Check if there are security cameras inside and outside the school buildings, and if so, ask how the cameras are monitored.
SECURITY/SAFETY TEAM Inquire if the school has a Security/Safety Team in place and who the members are. How often do they receive training, what type of training is available, and who provides it? Also ask how often they meet and if the minutes of their meetings are available to the public.
EMERGENCY PROCEDURES Ask if there are emergency plans and lock-down procedures in place, and how the procedures are communicated to teachers and students. You should also inquire how often the procedures are updated.
EMERGENCY DRILLS Check how often the school holds training sessions and emergency drills and how their effectiveness is evaluated. Also find out what type of emergencies the drills cover.
OUTSIDE SECURITY EXPERTS Does the school work with outside security experts? Who are they? Who within the school administration do they meet with and how often?
COMMUNICATION Find out how the school plans on communicating with law enforcement and fire and safety agencies and what the procedure is for notifying parents in case of an emergency. Also, ask how you, as a parent, can notify the school of suspicious activities and if there are any hotlines and tip lines in place.
AND FINALLY – HOME AGAIN If your child is comfortable spending time home alone until you get home from work, discuss and practice a safety plan that is easy to follow. Display important phone numbers and set rules for how and when to use the stove, microwave oven, computer, and TV.All-Guard cameras make it easy for you to not only keep a watchful eye on your child after school but also give you peace of mind knowing that your babysitter properly supervises your child when you can’t be there in person.

All-Guard has worked with Bay Area school districts for many years making our schools a safer place for students and faculty. If you feel All-Guard’s Security Consultants could help your child’s school, please contact us at 800.255.4273

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