Helping to Maintain School Security
Security is a major concern for all schools. As well as keeping pupils secure whilst on the site, they also need to prevent unauthorised access. One of the ways of achieving this is with the construction of a perimeter fence, such as wrought iron railings, and gated access.
Meet Ofsted Requirements
Ofsted has specific guidance in place for its inspectors concerning security and the safeguarding of children. This ensures that schools must take adequate measures to maintain pupil safety within the school grounds. Inspectors will be checking to see if the school has the right security measures in place and they might get a lower score if gates and fences do not meet the required levels.
Preventing Theft or Damage
As well as keeping children safe when they are at school, gates and fences can also stop access to the site by thieves. Today schools have large amounts of expensive IT equipment, which could make them a target for criminals. Arson attacks are another big issue for schools. These can cause extensive damage not just to the buildings, but also to pupils' work, which is irreplaceable. Many of these attacks could be prevented if the site was adequately secured.
Maintain the Right Image
Schools have to maintain effective security, but it's important not to go too far. They also need to remain as open as possible and be seen to encourage greater ties with the wider community. Therefore they don't want to appear too prison-like, with high fences and barbed wire. As well as not providing a welcoming and friendly environment, going too over the top with security could indicate that there is a problem and lead to further crime.
Fencing is a prime consideration when it comes to putting safety and security measures in place within school grounds. This needs to cover the exposed perimeter of the school. As this is a school environment, the fencing should remain aesthetically pleasing but show that they're serious about security. An effective fence, including those with wrought iron railings, will stop opportunist criminals from accessing the site and slow down more planned and determined attempts at gaining entry. It will also stop pupils from leaving the site during the day or without parental consent.
Whilst it's important to maintain security with the use of a secure and durable fence, there also need to be access points along the perimeter. In order to keep the site secure, these should be kept to a minimum. A gate will denote specific entry and exit points and allow these to be locked or manned as required. The site can be open for pupils to enter and exit at the start and end of the day. They can then be locked and accessed via an intercom system at other times.
When specifying new school fences or gates, it's important that they are designed and manufactured to a high standard. Poor-quality security measures will not prove to be a good investment.