Educational facilities should be geared to one thing only – to provide an environment conducive to learning. To achieve this, a strong foundation of safety is necessary and that comes from installing a comprehensive security system for schools and campuses from reputable school security companies – one that encompasses a school and campus alarm system, access control, door locks and video security as well as other school security solutions.
With a greater focus on security systems for schools and campuses over the past decade, educational facilities have been adopting security cameras for schools and university campuses as well as school alarm systems and effective access control. The National Center for Education Statistics stated that between 2009–10 and 2019–20, the percentage of public schools reporting the use of school security solutions increased, with a 49% increase in the use of security cameras, a 22% increase for ID badges and a 6% increase for access control.
An effective school alarm system can help secure educational facilities from theft, unauthorized access, fire and natural disasters – some of which need to be adhered to as part of local building codes. By installing perimeter alarms, any intrusion event can trigger the school alarm system, which would emit a loud siren and/or flashing lights, helping to ensure any intruder is made aware that their trespassing has alerted the security team and the relevant authorities. A sensor alarm for doors can also help school administrators detect events like doors left ajar and jammed locks. Door security alarms can be triggered through a motion sensor alarm, vibration detector, a sensor alarm on a door or via infrared.
Depending on the setting, whether it’s a school alarm system for a K-12 single building or a college campus security alarm system for a sprawling multi-building complex, integrated security systems for schools and campuses help protect students and faculty.
For single building facilities, an alarm system for schools can be installed that provides enhanced situational awareness, both indoors and outdoors. For example, when a fire alarm is triggered, the alert is sent to the security team via the school alarm system and, with the supporting mapping software, they are able to see where in the school that alarm was triggered. This school alarm system information can then be shared with the relevant staff or first responders who can respond to the situation without having to search for the alarm location themselves, saving precious time.
With university campus security systems, operators need to be alerted to events taking place in multiple locations. Unlike a security alarm system for schools that alerts operators to an event taking place within a short walking distance from the control room, operators of campus security systems may be alerted to an incident that is a driving distance away from their control room. Door security alarms would be required for entrances and exits, staff rooms, data rooms, libraries, gyms and other facilities that are typically found across a university campus.
It’s vital that educational facilities implement school and college campus security solutions that are able to allow authorized individuals onto their sites and keep unauthorized individuals out. Access control systems are keyless entry systems that are used to secure both outdoor and indoor environments, from parking lots to classrooms. With multiple access control methods available, from keypads to biometrics to mobile-based, it’s important that you find the solution that best fits into your school safety solution.
Whether it is during the school day, at night, or even during the weekend, schools and universities need to ensure their facilities remain secure at all times. With an advanced access control system that incorporates the best school door locks and door sensor alarms installed at various campus and school security checkpoints, unauthorized individuals will be unable to gain access to restricted buildings as they won’t possess the right credentials. Should they decide to force entry, an alert is sent to the security system for schools and universities, notifying the operator of an intrusion. All access events are reported in an activity log, allowing operators to see who is accessing what and when. With effective door locks that include a security alarm for the door or a sensor alarm for the door, you can go even further with securing restricted areas within a building.
The best door sensor alarms and locks, as part of a modern access control security system for schools and college campuses, will allow those with the correct credentials to easily gain access to a building, classroom or school facility. Schools and campuses can provide such credentials to students, staff and even planned visitors or vendors, in the form of badges, as part of an on-premise solution, or via cloud-based mobile access, where credentials can be sent digitally to the individual’s smartphone.
An on-premise access control security system for schools is hosted on your own servers and kept in-house, which helps your team take sole management of the settings, connections and controls without having to rely on a third-party vendor.
With a cloud-based access control system, access events can be managed remotely at any time – meaning the operator does not have to be on-site to authorize access, adjust settings and hand out credentials. Not only does this type of security system for schools help to increase efficiency and reduce costs, but it is also quick to deploy and scale in size.
When a situation develops, security teams need to know what is happening and where. By placing school security cameras at particular school security checkpoints, such as in incident-prone areas, they can provide live and recorded video to the control room via the video management software (VMS), giving operators enhanced situational awareness and the ability to make informed decisions that expedite real-time responses and forensic investigations. The latest cloud-based IP security camera solutions possess AI-powered video analytics which have the ability to automatically alert users to an unfolding incident on their VMS, resulting in streamlined responses and providing essential information that can enhance school security systems procedures.
Bullet and dome security cameras
Panoramic security cameras
PTZ security cameras
Connecting the different components of school security solutions can create a stronger, more holistic system. When choosing campus security systems, look for school security companies that offer seamless integration between locks, access control, cameras, and alarms for the highest level of protection and efficiency.
An example of the effective use of an alarm system for schools integrated with other school security solutions is when dealing with vaping incidents. With the recent surge in teenage vaping, especially among high school students, educational facilities need to be aware of students bringing vaping devices with them to school and using them. In a recent study, teachers expressed concern about vaping in schools, reporting incidents of students vaping that led to classroom disruptions. By installing vape detectors that are integrated with the alarms in the school’s security system, the on-site team can be alerted to vaping events instantly, allowing them to respond appropriately. With this school alarm system, vaping incidents at high schools can be cut down significantly.
Unfortunately, bike thefts are becoming more common on school campuses, with a recent study from England stating that on average there is one bike theft recorded for every 66 students, and 96% of cases either resulted in no suspect being identified or had no outcome. As part of a security system for schools and colleges, installing video security cameras integrated with the school alarm system at strategic points near a bike shed may help limit theft. By capturing the entire scene, bike theft incidents can be recorded as well as brought to the attention of the security team as they are occuring. The bike alarm system for schools could then sound to deter the thief, and the recorded footage can assist in identifying and locating the suspect if they’re still on campus. With the help of AI video analytics, such as Avigilon Appearance Search™ technology, the school security solution could also alert authorities if the suspect returns to campus.
In rare situations, a school or campus lockdown may be necessary to ensure safety. Effective lockdown procedures for schools can be carried out by a responsive access control system – one that also integrates with a school alarm system, cameras and sensors to create a powerful school security solution. For example, if an intruder is able to force entry through the entrance doors and access an elementary school, the door security alarms will send an alert via the school’s access control system and notify security that an unauthorized individual has gained access. A cloud-based lockdown activation, offered by school security companies like Openpath, lets administrators trigger a custom lockdown plan from anywhere, ensuring classrooms and other secure areas remain inaccessible to the intruder. With an integrated video security system, the operator can also locate and track the intruder’s whereabouts in order to respond quickly and decisively.
If such a situation occurred at a sprawling college campus, the security team could respond differently by initiating a lockdown at the specific site of the intrusion only. As a result, the disruption would not be seen campus-wide.
There’s never been a better time to ensure schools and colleges are adopting best practices and implementing solutions designed to protect confidential information. The focus must turn to establishing strong cybersecurity resilience as part of a security system for schools and campuses by:
With many standalone security systems for schools and universities, it is important that these systems are handled efficiently. By implementing a security management platform, teams can centralize the maintenance, operational state and scaling of the school alarm system, access control and video security. By centralizing all these systems on one platform, teams can reduce workload, improve productivity and ensure their school and campus security systems are optimized and operational.
Now that you’re familiar with the types of security systems for schools and campuses, use this checklist to help build a powerful, integrated security system that will help keep your school or college campus safe.
School alarm system
School access control and door lock system
Security camera system for schools
Outdoor spaces and large events
Flexible lockdown procedures