Safety and Security

PASS Releases Update to Safety and Security Guidelines

The Partner Alliance for Safer Schools (PASS) recently released a series of updates to its K–12 safety and security guidelines, according to the organization’s website. The organization reviews and updates its guidelines every two years to ensure K–12 schools around the country have the most current and comprehensive list of best practices to help secure educational facilities. Contributions come from subject matter experts in education, public safety, and security, according to the website.

“Facility security measures are a critical part of protection, mitigation, and response and to keeping our schools safe,” said Jeremy Gulley, member of the PASS Board of Directors and Advisory Council and superintendent of Jay School Corporation in Portland, Ind. “The latest version of the PASS Safety and Security Guidelines reflects and addresses the most current threats facing K–12 schools and offers robust information and best practices for those of us in the education community on how we can better secure our schools.”

The guidelines are divided into five physical layers of school facilities including district perimeter, property perimeter, parking lot perimeter, building perimeter, and the classroom/interior perimeter. Safety and security components considered within each of the five layers include policies and training, roles and training, architecture, access control, communications, detection and alarms, and video surveillance, according to the website.

Revisions new to Version 6 of the PASS Guidelines include the following:

  • Refocused recommendations for best practices that can help identify areas of improvement by separating out practices that are already required by federal law or regulations or that are already standard practice throughout the U.S.
  • Redesigning safety tiers for clarity, recommending that schools and districts of any location, budget, and risk profile work toward achieving all Tier One measures before Tier Two.
  • Improvements to the classroom security section, simplified and revised to use more current terms, illustrations, and recommendations that match with modern door hardware and access control solutions.
  • An “Enhanced Technologies” section discussing newer technologies in fields like weapons detection, emergency communications, analytics, and biometrics. The technologies illustrated have potential for wide implementation but are still new enough that they haven’t been widely adopted.

The PASS Safety and Security Guidelines are free to download on the PASS website.

About the Author

Matt Jones is senior editor of Spaces4Learning. He can be reached at [email protected].