In recent years, school security has become a far more pressing concern. High profile tragedies such as Dunblane add greater urgency to the demand for children to be given maximum protection while studying in the classroom. The days of open access playing fields and unfenced perimeters around school sites have long since vanished, with many schools now resembling fortresses rather than seats of learning.
While safeguarding children and property cannot be overlooked and is the responsibility of teaching professionals, parents and students, equally many would rightly argue that transforming schools into prisons is not conducive to a positive learning environment – so achieving a balance is essential.
The need for Secure School Perimeter
Mercifully, incidents that personally endanger children and staff in schools are rare, but this doesn’t detract from the need for schools to be adequately secured, during school hours, holidays and overnight.
School leaders and site managers need to be confident that strangers can be kept off school premises during the daytime and at night to protect children’s wellbeing and minimise the risk of theft and vandalism. Insurance claims for acts of vandalism and arson run into millions of pounds every year in the UK. At the same time, the presence of a stranger with malicious intent in a school building could spell unthinkable consequences for children’s safety.
Effective school security needs effective planning.
Safeguarding pupils and property is not simply a case of erecting a school fence around the perimeter to keep out the undesirables.
Firstly, effective security depends on careful planning to ensure that access to the site is restricted in its entirety while providing suitable access to visitors to the school.
Secondly, the type and style of fencing used should be matched to the age of the pupils, for example, designed in such a way as to prevent younger children from attempting to climb it, which could be potentially dangerous.
Finally, to minimise the impact on the environment and reduce the chances of a school fence appearing like a prison, it should be designed sympathetically to be aesthetically pleasing – if possible, blending into the surroundings while also offering a suitable deterrent to potential intruders.
Enlisting the expertise of a specialist fencing company is the logical way to secure your school site, protecting the pupils and property at all times of day throughout the year.