The Safe Schools-Healthy Students Initiative is an effort by the federal government to make our schools secure. It is a collaborative and comprehensive plan that assists communities in creating a protected environment for students. The primary focus is on communication, security, and the students themselves. In order to achieve the highest level of safety, it is important to understand the various aspects of the safe schools initiative.
It is crucial that schools communicate effectively with parents in emergency situations. This is accomplished by using sophisticated telephone systems and alerts. Schools can send phone messages, texts, and emails to all parents instantly. This amazing technology allows parents to remain informed. Many schools use these systems for general announcements, weather-related delays and closings, and for emergencies. Lack of dialogue creates chaos and panic during dangerous situations. When parents and the community are aware, everyone can work together more efficiently.
There are a number of procedures carried out to make schools more secure. Many schools today lock all outside doors once classes start for the day. Anyone entering the building must be let in by a staff member. Some campuses have police officers or security guards on the premises at all times. It is common for schools to practice lock down procedures, similar to a fire drill. They lock classroom doors, shield doors with desks, turn out lights, and move students into the safest area of the classroom. Larger schools require all students to wear a student ID to ensure that everyone in the building is supposed to be there. Additionally, visiting parents and adults are required to wear visitor passes. Safe School systems can integrate alarms and video to identify threats such as doors left open, persons in secured areas, etc. These systems have all proven to be successful methods of creating a protected environment for students.
Much of the violence and danger in our schools come from within the school. Disturbed students are one of the biggest threats we face. Schools are focusing on targeting and helping these kids before they act out. This comes in the form of mental health assistance. Students are encouraged to tell teachers and administrators if they recognize an issue in other students. Furthermore, strict policies and rules are now in place regarding weapons and violence.
To date, the government has spent $2 billion funding safety initiatives. Communities everywhere are experiencing much success with these programs. As technology advances, we continue to find new ways to educate our children and keep them safe at the same time. We must persist in focusing on communication, security, and the students.