Student at school entrance

Security monitoring for your school’s campus

Investing in a modern security system for your campuses is the first significant step to providing a safe physical learning environment. So your system records and can alert on events, but then what? Is your organization prepared to react when events take place? 

When sending their children to school, parents are trusting the school to keep their children safe. According to a report, 92% of administrators feel they have adequate safety measures within their district, and only 67% of parents agree. That’s a 30% gap between administrators and parents on perception of school safety.

Here are some essential services you should have to minimize your organization’s liability and make sure the right people show up when it matters.

Physical Access Control Notifications and Reporting

Having badges and physical access control role limitations may not be enough. When student safety is involved, it is critical to keep an eye on access events that are getting denied on a regular basis. Frequently rejected card attempts at a card reader with no type of surveillance could help you identify gaps in your overall campus security. After multiple attempts to access the campus, how is that staff member getting in, or is it actually an unwanted visitor? Maybe another staff member? What about your exits that you have marked “Emergency Exit Only.”

Unless you have an integrated security system with alerts and dispatch activated, students and teachers can easily prop doors open to sneak out just a bit outside of the reach of your main cameras. 

Having the proper notification settings in your system and ensuring these are being sent and triaged by the right team member is critical to everyone’s safety and preventing incidents from occurring. 

Suppose your internal security team has ten campuses to monitor and respond to. Are they catching and responding to each event? In this situation, this is where monthly reporting is key. Most modern access control systems can generate automated monthly reports. These reports can identify counts of access, denials, and who within your system caused these events or more critical events such as forced entry.

Panic Button Monitoring and Dispatch

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, 27 percent of schools reported using silent panic alarms. A common misconception is that panic buttons will trigger the right person to show up. Without the proper services in place, your campus could have hardware that gives a false sense of security. To be operational, panic buttons and active shooter buttons require a reliable monitoring and dispatching service provider to have communication access to identify when triggered. 

Your monitoring and dispatching provider then, based on your predefined instructions for them, notifies and sends out the proper local authority to respond to the event. These monthly service dispatching arrangements are highly affordable and worth the added security when the time comes that they are genuinely needed. Having this service in place could literally save lives.

Recording Reporting

One of the more common issues schools today face is making sure they have accessible, easily searchable archives of camera footage. Whether it’s a break-in to a coach’s truck during evening practice, a student altercation in the main corridor of your high school, students participating in illegal activity in the parking lot, or unfortunate and unexpected bus incidents. Unfortunately, by today’s standards, everyone is expecting you to catch it all. The only way to effectively do this is with modern, high-quality security cameras fully integrated into one networked system with tons of storage. 

After overhauling your system, the last thing as the head of campus security or the Admin team for a district that you want to find out is that your on-prem hardware can only store 6 hours of backup footage. Or that during the spin-up of the new system, a couple of cameras were not configured into the system correctly and are not recording the entrances to your campus.

It’s critical to work with an access control and alarm system team that not only installs the hardware but knows how to configure and integrate the whole system on the front end. Ensure you have the proper ad-hoc event notification and monthly reporting set up to identify any failure in recording, archiving storage, and playback retrieval abilities. 

Top-tier technology integrations teams can offer monthly, quarterly, and annual services to cover this security gap, plus be sourced to help get you fixed up and working correctly in no time.

Integrated Mass Notification

Monitoring and dispatch services are frequently an afterthought. Even with the media hype, there has been a slow emphasis within organizations to invest in a holistic physical security system. Mass notification devices and applications play an equally important role in preventing events and lessening how bad an event could be. 

PoE clocks with integrated notification marques are a quick, long-term investment to push out emergency notifications on campus. Some of these solutions offer custom messaging and mobile access and can integrate into the right security system. Others are stand-alone solutions with their own applications that can include text message notifications, emails, or even automated phone calls to predefined emergency contacts for your students.

TFE is your one-stop shop for all your physical access security needs. We can walk your organization through minor upgrades such as system firmware updates. Or we can make recommendations for a complete system overhaul to upgrade into today’s integrated security technology world. Contact us today to learn more.