If  you care about school safety as much as we do,  the Sandy Hook Shooting Advisory Commission’s final report (PDF) on the December 2012 school shooting should be required reading.

The report covers a lot of ground from mental health to reasonable gun control policies but our primary mission here is school safety and here the report had many recommendations that we’ve been promoting for quite some time.

The report has many school safety recommendations to handle the four active shooter priorities Deterrence, Detection, Delay and Response.  School site design specific recommendations include:

A. The “All Hazards” Approach To Safe School Design And Operation.

Excerpt:

Based on testimony from experts at the state, regional and federal
level, the Council determined that school safety infrastructure
planning should be based on an ―all hazards‖ assessment, and
that school design safety standards should encourage the use of
protective infrastructure design features in all levels or layers of
school facility construction including:

  • Site development and preparation;
  • Perimeter boundaries and access points;
  • Secondary perimeters up to the building exterior;
  • and the interior of the building itself.

Another important point, made repeatedly by professionals in the
field, is that the conduct of these local uniform assessments must
be an inclusive process involving police, fire, medical, school and
other local officials. This public safety team approach is not only
important in the assessment phase, but throughout the design and
construction period as well. The need for redundancy and
collaboration is essential.

[Large sections excerpted]

RECOMMENDATION NO. 8:

(1) entryways to school buildings, classrooms and other space that can become areas of safe haven, such as, reinforcement of entryways, forced entry and/or ballistic rated glazing, solid core (FE and/or BR) doors, double door access, computer-controlled electronic locks, remotely controlled locks on all entrance and exits and buzzer systems, (2) the use of cameras throughout the school building and at all entrances and exits, including the use of closed circuit television monitoring, (3) penetration resistant vestibules, and (4) other security infrastructure improvements and devices as they become industry standards.

The report goes into 15 pages of school safety specifics for each area of a school and duties for staff. We largely agree with all these school safety design specific recommendations but don’t have the space to detail all 15 pages here. We feel that the full report is well worth a read if you care about school safety.

If  you have questions about how you’d implement these school safety recommendations in your school or workplace, please contact us and we’ll show you how you can do it and possibly get funding from outside sources to do it.