Security Technology Executive

JUL-AUG 2018

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26 SECURIT Y TECHNOLOGY E XECUTIVE • July/August 2018 • www. SecurityInfoWatch.com While all three experts concur that technology is a critical tool in helping deter, detect and defend students, staff and teachers in a school environ- ment, they also encourage a greater involvement with local law enforcement. Implementing two- way communication solutions can instill a sense of security for administrators, but also give law enforcement a heads up and paint a picture when a threat emerges. However, Kelly LeDuff and his father Jeff recommend establishing personal ties with local agencies that can help expedite future confusion when an incident does occur. CAMPUS SECURIT Y 4 Mistakes Schools Make When Planning for Security • It Won't Happen Here: A common mistake we see is that so many leaders have this attitude that they will never face an armed intruder event. That thinking leads to weak solutions and wasting money. The problem is that they are focused on the frequency and not the severity of an intruder event. Most people are never going to be in a building that is actually on fire. Should we pull fire alarm systems from the code requirements and from our buildings? No. The cost is so little compared to the benefit if the need arises. We need to rethink the need to improve safety and focus on common sense protections for intruder events." • Do Something: " We see many leaders who are reacting as opposed to planning. Their decision- making is driven more as a reaction to pressure from the board or parents to 'do something' that they are more focused on checking boxes to say we did something as opposed to taking the time to plan and seek out solutions and training that improve safety significantly. We understand that this is a complex issue with many nuances, but that should drive us to deeper investigating and plan- ning as opposed to less." • Engage Your Police: "Schools have a great resource in their local police departments that they may not be taking full advantage of. These are the people who are trained in emergency response and will be the ones arriving on site to resolve the problem. Although generally, most schools have a great rela- tionship with their local police, they fail to truly engage them in decision making and planning." • Engage Your Students: "Most school districts develop plans and procedures among a relatively small group of administrators because it is expedi- ent. This makes good sense. But engaging students is a critical element as well. We have worked with a school district that did a great job of engaging their middle and high school students not on the macro issues but on the micro issues. The first week of school, they do anywhere from five to 10 intruder drills at random times of the day. They then take time to engage students in different areas of the building: where are you going to go and why? Are there other options? The administration was amazed at some of the answers and ideas their students came up with. By engaging their students to problem- solve, not only did the students have more ownership in their response protocols, the schools' plans improved. This truly is a win-win for school safety." » Inviting law enforcement to come to the school and participate in drills with the school is a great way to engage. « – Jeff LeDuff. 1 2 3 4 "There is not a law enforcement agency in the nation that is not concerned with school safety today and they prepare for these events regular- ly. But not every school is in sync with local law enforcement and not every school has a designat- ed resource officer or police officer assigned to the school," says Kelly, who adds that building rela- tionships and requesting a designated resource officer is a great start. "Additionally, involving law enforcement in anti-bullying campaigns is helpful. Over and over in the shooter incidents, we've seen in recent years, there's a student who feels ostra- cized and acts out. As each incident occurs, the next shooter is spurred on. By getting law enforce- ment involved in anti-bullying initiatives, kids feel more comfortable reaching out." Jeff concludes: "Inviting law enforcement to come to the school and participate in drills with the school is a great way to engage. By including faculty and staff in those drills with law enforcement, as well as involving students, such as student government leaders, this will help everyone involved play out a scenario and understand what to do should an incident occur."

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