Your school is located in the middle of a dry dessert. You haven't had a significant rain in years. Yet due to public outcry your school administrator has just purchased life jackets for every staff and student member and like a cruise ship mounted life boats along the edge of the schools roof for all to board when the school is flooded and swept away. Might this be a little crazy? Yes. But aren't we actually doing something very similar to that in how we often spend our school safety and security dollars?
So how do you decide what to spend your safety and security dollars on? One of the most important things you can do is come to a realistic understanding of what threatens your facility. In short...what are the odds? So what are the odds of someone getting hurt on campus due to an accident, sporting event or violence? What are the odds of your facility being impacted by flooding or maybe hazardous materials from the railroad tracks that run across the back of the campus? What are the odds of a staff or student dying the next school year? What are the odds of someone coming to your school and shooting the place the up? After you figure this out you need to prioritize these type of events then committ your funds to the most likely events first.
Tragically, all to often we throw our money, time and effort at the types of events we emotional fear and not take time to really see what types of hazards are most likely to occur. Just look at the spending frenzy that occurs in the days after a school shooting. Look at the demands from the parents, schools boards, consultants and administrators to buy all types of equipment and services to supposedly prevent a shooting from ever happening at their school. Simply put your schools needs a truthful vulnerabilty study conducted by a creditble consultant. Not the salesman for some wigget that has some skin the game. You need someone who isn't selling software and systems. You need a well educated and informed impartial consultant.
I wish we had those dollars to spend on the real hazards that face our schools today. We need to stop putting life boats on schools in the middle of the desert. We need to educate ourselves to the real hazards and spend our dollars on what has the greatest probability of impacting our staff and students.
If you would like to learn more about what hazards truly face your school or district please contact us today. We would love to talk with you. As a pulic agency we are NOT a for profit organization. Our only goal is to create safe and productive learning and work environments. This is John Baker for safetysolutions4schools.com. Image courtesy of www.cruises.com.