It's back-to-school time, and hopefully you've checked all the boxes for getting your staff, classrooms, and students ready for the upcoming school year. But in all of the back-to-school rush, you may have forgotten about your to-do list for safety.
School safety is always in progress and always relevant, no matter what time of year it is; however, it’s always prudent to take stock and plan your safety improvements at the start of the school year. There's plenty of advice on back-to-school safety, but it often applies to parents and families preparing their little ones to go back-to-school. It can be difficult to find a straight-forward back-to-school safety document that isn't focused on active shooter safety. While that is certainly important, there are many aspects of school safety that should be considered.
Providing a safe, secure learning environment is a top priority for virtually any school and district, but there are many different solutions that each have varying levels of financial cost and resources required to install. Some safety improvements like gunshot detection can take time to find the funding and the pathway for implementation, whereas some very effective safety improvements can be accomplished with minimal (if any) cost and little installation work.
We would like to share our back-to-school safety checklist with you so you can assess the level of safety improvements your schools could be making on the classroom, building, and district-level. This checklist will help you keep track of the changes you’ve made, are making, and will make to improve the safety of your educational community. The checklist also shares low cost safety improvements that your district can utilize to make noticeable safety improvements right now.
Like many districts, your schools may have already invested dollars and time in a variety of tools and security enhancements to address the very serious needs of school safety. What may not be clear is how effective these resources are at covering your school safety needs and if any safety gaps remain. Remember that many safety investments can be more powerful and effective by supplemental improvements.
While you might not be able to check off every box on this back-to-school safety checklist, we hope that you can use it as a way to evaluate the improvements you can make, as well as the improvements you want to make in the future.
Don't forget that some safety solutions may be able to cover multiple safety needs or issues. One comprehensive safety solution, for example, would be an integrated safety platform that connects your schools and public safety personnel to rapidly respond to a critical event. Having one, unified and simple safety and security solution that gives all your people—including staff, administrators, students, parents, and first responders—instant notification and reliable communication is vital to manage critical events. In order to truly provide safe schools and learning environments, you should consider a platform that contains tools and integrations that function as a fluid system, allowing you to navigate virtually whatever situation arises, from the start of an incident to its resolution.
CrisisGo's digital communication and emergency response platform can cover many of your school safety needs. Beyond providing a platform for prevention, response, and resolution to safety incidents, CrisisGo also checks the box for often overlooked safety aspects like:
- Scheduling, monitoring, and reporting safety drills.
- Streamlining your reunification process.
- Digitizing your emergency plans.
- Empowering students with a specialized safety app.
- Building a schedule to send safety awareness content to teachers and parents.
No matter how you choose to go about making your schools safer, we hope this checklist will help you do so with knowledge and confidence.