How to Conduct a Physical Security Audit of a School
Keeping our children safe is always a top priority for schools, daycare centers, and parents, especially with violent occurrences becoming so common. While this blog is written for schools this information all applies to any location where there are children or where people gather. Churches, Theaters, Gyms, Stores, Restaurants, Museums simply replace the word “school” and apply this to your facility as well! One way to ensure their safety is by conducting physical security audits of the school. A physical security audit is a comprehensive examination of the school’s physical security measures to identify potential weaknesses and vulnerabilities. In this article, All Secure will explore how to conduct a physical security audit of a school.
Gather Information: The first step in conducting a physical security audit is to gather information about the school’s physical security measures. Review the school’s security plan, policies, and procedures, and identify the areas that need improvement. Interview school staff, including security personnel and administrators, to learn about any incidents that have occurred in the past and how they were handled.
Conduct a Physical Inspection: Once you have gathered information, it’s time to conduct a physical inspection of the school. Walk around the entire campus, including classrooms, restrooms, hallways, dining rooms, gymnasiums, and exterior areas. Look for any signs of damage, wear and tear, or neglect to video surveillance equipment, door hardware and windows. Check the locks on doors and windows, and ensure that they are working correctly and open easily for quick exits as well as lock properly to maintain a secure perimeter. Make note of any potential security vulnerabilities, including blind spots or areas where surveillance cameras are not present.
Test Security Measures: After the physical inspection, it’s time to test the school’s security measures. Try to gain access to the school by going through doors or windows that are not supposed to be open. See how long it takes for security personnel to respond to an unauthorized entry attempt. Test panic buttons, alarms, and other security systems to ensure that they are working correctly.
Review Emergency Plans: Every school should have an emergency plan in case of a crisis, such as a fire or an active shooter. Review the school’s emergency plans and procedures, including evacuation routes, shelter-in-place locations, and communication protocols. Make sure that all staff members are trained in emergency response and that the school has adequate supplies, such as first-aid kits and emergency food and water. Run drills with the faculty and the student body so all are prepared in the event of an emergency.
Make Recommendations: After completing the physical security audit, it’s time to make recommendations for improvement. Create a report that outlines the strengths and weaknesses of the school’s physical security measures and provides recommendations for improvement. Make sure that the report is specific, actionable, and easy to understand. Present the report to the school’s administrators, PTA, school board, and local government officials.
Conducting a physical security audit of a school is a vital step in ensuring the safety of our children. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can conduct a comprehensive examination of the school’s physical security measures and provide recommendations for improvement. Remember, every school is unique, and security measures should be tailored to meet its specific needs. Keep our children safe by making sure that your school’s physical security measures are up to par. If you need help with this assessment, All Secure can walk the property with you to help identify potential security concerns. We love our community. Lets all help to keep everyone safe from harm.
4/26/2023 – Current News Update:
If your school is looking for the funds to improve security protocols, we discovered a grant program that is taking applications through May 17, 2023. Check out this program available to law enforcement, local governments, tribal councils, and school district to help improve physical security systems. https://cops.usdoj.gov/svpp