School Shootings Aren’t The Only Violent Threat On Campus
For both educators and school administrators, keeping the children in their care safe is probably the most important aspect of their job. While teaching reading, writing, and arithmetic are the ultimate goal, the primary task – above all others – is student safety.
Unfortunately, we’re all too familiar with the threat of active shooters on school campuses, but school shootings are relatively uncommon when compared to other violent activities at schools. For example, 6% of students ages 12-18 report being called hate-words while at school, and 18% of violent incidents at schools do not involve a gun. 963,300 violent incidents (and 476,100 non-violent incidents) were reported by US public schools in 2019 alone, with 71% of schools reporting at least one violent incident.
Additionally, threats at schools don’t just come from students – trespassers or aggressive adults and/or parents can also pose a threat to the safety of the students, faculty, and staff. This can be especially true in instances when bullying is a factor, as parents of victims may want to speak with school administrators to gather information and, in such an emotionally charged conversation, things may quickly get out of hand. In fact, 18% of teachers state that they or a colleague within their district (including school bus drivers, administrators, and school security staff) had been physically assaulted by a parent or guardian within the past year.
License Plate Recognition (LPR) Technology Spots Unauthorized Individuals Before They Reach The Door
One way to proactively protect students, staff, and visitors is to ensure that only authorized individuals are on campus and that when an unauthorized vehicle approaches the main office and/or security are notified immediately.
With License Plate Reading technology, school security personnel will be alerted to both vehicles that are not on the “allowed” list or vehicles that are explicitly listed on a “do not allow” list. When one of these vehicles arrives on the property, the school staff will have multiple opportunities to address the situation – from greeting the visitor, collecting their details, escorting them to the main office to conduct their business, or preventing them from accessing the building, asking that they leave immediately, and alerting the authorities.
For vehicles that pose an immediate risk – such as one on the “do not allow” list that is associated with a known aggressor, the school staff can also put the building on lockdown as soon as the vehicle arrives on the property.
Additionally, LPR technology can aid public safety officials in investigations for both on-campus and off-campus incidents by capturing images of the vehicle of interest – and, of course, its license plate – so that, if needed or requested, they can pass as much identifying information on to the authorities as possible. During investigations – even those that are not school related – law enforcement agencies frequently seek out footage from surveillance cameras in the area of a crime, or in an area where they think a suspect may have traveled. LPR cameras on school campuses can help police determine if their suspect or their vehicle was in a specific area at a specific time, and may be able to provide images that can be entered into evidence.
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Our Team | Solution Engineering, Installation, and Support
For over 30 years, the MCA team has provided expertly tailored solutions to schools – from K-12 to colleges and universities – in need of video surveillance, security systems, Private LTE networks, and more. We can integrate new systems with your existing systems and completely replace and upgrade your systems should they no longer meet your needs or federal safety guidelines.