Fencing is an essential security feature of any school and creates a safe learning and working environment for students and staff alike. However, good security fencing also provides clear surveillance of those entering and leaving the grounds and is often the first thing people will notice when looking at a school for future enrolment. Here are four things you need to consider when choosing school fencing.
1. Risk assessments
Security comes before everything else, so you will need to carry out a comprehensive risk assessment while considering performance, aesthetics, and maintenance issues. You can do this by thinking like a potential intruder and using photographs, drawings, and notes to identify different weaknesses. Also, don’t forget that having a high fence at the front of the school doesn’t necessarily guarantee security if there’s a low fence at the back. Ensure your perimeter security is consistent to make it as difficult as possible for intruders to break in.
2. Quality guaranteed
Budget constraints are common at all institutions, and it’s only natural to consider installing a cheap fence to cut costs. However, an inexpensive fence is likely to be low quality and might incur more costs in the long run. For example, it may need regular repair work and maintenance, and eventually, replacement.
3. Aesthetic value
While security should always be your main concern, you also need to consider the aesthetic value of your chosen fence. Ask yourself whether students, parents, and staff will take pride in how the school looks. Appearance might not seem important right now, but it will matter for students and staff who have to look at it every day. In addition, acoustic fencing will significantly reduce noise from the school environment or nearby roads, depending on the school’s location.
4. Standards and approval
Although school fences are there primarily to protect students and staff from intruders, their safety while they’re on the school grounds is important too. Ensure the fencing you choose is approved and prevents clothing from being ripped, has no sharp edges, and so on. While a height of 1.2 – 1.6m is best for demarcation purposes, the perimeter fence should ideally be 1.8 – 2.4m high for a school, depending on local authority regulations.