By: Ban-koe Companies
When administrators talk with us about their school emergency plans, they’ll typically indicate many of the same requirements. The top three needs we tend to hear include:
Quicker methods for initiating their crisis management plan
Better communication to all individuals in the facility and across school grounds
More situational awareness and localized management of emergency condition statuses throughout the building
By achieving these three goals, school administrators believe they’ll bring more peace of mind to their teachers, staff, students, and parents. In this blog, we’ll discuss how to set up an effective crisis management plan so you’re ready to face down any number of emergencies, from weather events and fires to school shootings or other school threats.
Enhancing Your Current Emergency Preparedness System
While every district needs a school emergency plan, we’ve come to find that not all are created equally. Many are still stuck in the past, sometimes at no fault of their own. However, there are ways administrators can enhance their safety and security quickly with strategic planning and support from existing workplace security systems.
To start, it’s important to review and analyze whether you already have the following in place (as identified by FEMA) for your school or district:
Preparedness: Any action that prepares your school to handle an emergency, save more lives, and help response and rescue operations will go a long way when a crisis occurs. Actions include scheduled fire or tornado drills, updating any evacuation plans, communication strategies, and facility maps for first responders.
Response: Training your teachers, staff, and even students on how to handle emergencies calmly and efficiently will go a long way in responding to a crisis event. Everyone should know how to respond during a fire, tornado, or any other workplace or school threats on the premises.
Recovery: Any emergency preparedness plan must also prepare for the aftermath of a crisis event. Therapy for students and teachers may be necessary. You should also have ways to critically analyze any response to a crisis to make improvements for the future.
Mitigation: This step includes actions you may take at any point before or after an emergency. Mitigation is the act of reducing the severity of a crisis, including ones that have sadly become unavoidable in our current way of life. Most think of purchasing an insurance policy as a mitigation activity; however, there are some other tools your school or district may take advantage of to mitigate any possible emergency or school threat you’re facing.
Many of our workplace security solutions for businesses are designed to help schools as well, further enhancing their emergency preparedness systems. Some, like vIDix Aware, were even developed with schools in mind, directly addressing the three needs we mentioned above for quickness, communication, and situational awareness. Today, businesses and schools alike use vIDix Aware to enhance their crisis management plans, especially when it comes to mitigation.
Complete Your Crisis Management Plan with vIDix Aware
vIDix Aware is a comprehensive and scalable Crisis Event Alert & Status System that offers ease of use for all members of your school staff. It provides assistance in an emergency with features that include:
Mass Notification capabilities throughout a facility or school district
Visual Response Status to provide more situational awareness of each dynamic location using color indicators
The ability to forward a facility map with up-to-date information on current areas of concern to first responders
Proactive Alerts that go out by email or text to each individual, allowing them to respond with their status across the school’s grounds or facility
Response Analysis reporting to track current statuses and help you review all components surrounding a crisis event after the fact
We believe crisis management systems like vIDix Aware do their best work only after you’ve given widespread access to your staff, teachers, and other stakeholders at your school. That’s why the software is designed for multi-platform, multi-location usage.
Anyone with access to vIDix Aware may use it on their web-enabled device—such as a phone or tablet—and it works across all operating systems. Additionally, the system is hosted off-site for increased security and so it may be maintained 24/7 with automatic backups and upgrades. And because of its scalability, you can start with one location in your district and grow it as part of a multi-site, multi-user crisis management plan.
The vIDix Aware Emergency Preparedness System Now Works with Gunshot Detection
vIDix Aware offers the unique ability to start an event based on a gunshot at your school, alerting staff quickly so they can secure the classroom and protect students. Ban-Koe has partnered with Trinity Sound Technologies out of Wisconsin to integrate their gunshot sensors with vIDix Aware as a special add-on service.
Once a gunshot sound is detected, one or multiple actions can be triggered. vIDix Aware also works with other hardware, such as a push button at reception desk or a pendant around a teachers’ neck, to initiate an event. You’ll have the option to integrate Gunshot Detection with your intercom system as well in order to play a pre-recorded message to alert staff immediately.
Gunshot Detection is just one of the features we’re able to integrate with vIDix Aware. For more information on this emergency preparedness system and how it can help your school or district, reach out to our Ban-Koe sales team today..
Build Your School Emergency Plan with Ban-Koe for Increased Mitigation
vIDix Aware is just one of the school and workplace security solutions we provide to administrators. Others, like vIDix Muster, go further by assisting you during the critical Response & Recovery periods of your crisis management plan with shelter-in-place or evacuation support.
vIDix Muster is an emergency mustering tool that accounts for everyone who has entered your building that day. It can be integrated with other vIDix solutions (or third-party applications) including door access, time and attendance, and visitor management to display an accurate list of individuals that have entered the facility that day.
Furthermore, vIDix Muster allows you to:
Check In to let the safety team know you are secure during evacuation or while sheltering in place
Communicate with the safety team and keep them on the same page during a crisis
View each person’s checked-in status and share with first responders to help them respond accordingly during an event
You can read more about vIDix Muster here.
Despite requirements for schools to develop an emergency preparedness system, we’ve come to find that many still have critical gaps when it comes to facing modern-day school threats—especially where response time is concerned. It’s part of a larger trend in general of Americans—up to 60%, by some reports—being unprepared for a disaster of any kind.
That may be because many feel like they need to go it alone, or they can’t afford paying for a future event. Adding important mitigation efforts to your crisis management plan shouldn’t be a one-school or one-district job, however, and it shouldn’t have to break your budget. And with Ban-Koe, it won’t. We’re ready to work with you on enhancing your emergency preparedness system.
Allow us to bring our unmatched Global Support and reputation as a prominent safety and security provider for local schools to your district. GTR Business Systems today to discuss the solutions you need to prepare for any potential school emergency.