School Safety Series: Back to School Safety Tips
Sponsored by: Status Solutions
Summer has flown by again and there are one-thousand things running through our minds: shop for school supplies, set up doctor’s appointments, arrange the carpool, organize after-school care, and stay informed about safety within your child’s school. Did that last one make your list? Although we don’t typically think about school safety as a “back to school” task, it is important to keep it top of mind amongst all other to-dos. While it is not something we want to think about, its reality and we need to be prepared and aware. Use these safety tips as a guide to keep yourself informed about safety within your child’s school.
Be aware, not scared
- Simply ask your child about safety in his or her school. Students are very aware of their surroundings and often know where safety falls short. Where do they feel most safe? Where do they feel the least safe? Is there anything they’ve noticed that could be done to improve safety?
- Find out if your school has policies and procedures for security and emergency preparedness. Does your school have policies and procedures in place? Are the students informed of them, if so, how often? Are the parents informed of them, if so, how often?
See Something, Say Something
- Identify what methods are used when visiting and volunteering at your child’s school. Next time you go to volunteer or visit at your child’s school, ask yourself some of these questions: Are the front doors locked? Are all the exterior doors locked? Are you required to sign in? Is a personal ID required? Are you required to wear a nametag identifying yourself as a guest? Is a background check required?
- Does your school have procedures for communicating and responding quickly to unsafe situations? Take notice of how your school responds and communicates in the event of a crisis. What individuals are contacted in the event of an unsafe situation? How and why are these individuals contacted? Are the parents contacted? What kind of information is given?
- Identify whether or not your child is comfortable with their school’s methods of reporting safety concerns. Are there different venues students can use to express safety issues (school counselors, hotlines, email accounts, suggestion box, etc.)? Is there at least one adult that students feel comfortable sharing safety concerns with? Do parents feel comfortable sharing safety concerns with the administration?
- Get Involved. Join the PTA/PTO or start a school safety committee. Be a presence to show that you are serious about improving safety and security within your child’s school.
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