School Safety and Security

Man and Security Guard and or policeman speaking to one another

Montgomery County Public Schools/Bill Mills:

Keeping Our Schools Safe

The primary responsibility of every school district is to ensure a safe and secure environment for students, staff and visitors. Listed below are articles and resources on school safety and crisis management.

NSBA's School Safety Issue Brief
Webinars and Videos
In the News
American School Board Journal and School Board News Today Articles
Research and Reports
Resources for School Attorneys
State School Board Associations and Other Resources

Webinars and Videos

Webinar: Dec. 21, 2012: Planning For and Managing the School Crisis You Hope Never Comes 
Sponsored by the National School Boards Association’s Office of General Counsel and the Council of School Attorneys. 

Video: Dec. 19, 2012: School Safety following Sandy Hook
Missouri School Boards' Association interviews Paul Fennewald of the Missouri Center for Education Safety on School Safety following Sandy Hook 

In the News  

Dec. 19, 2012: The National School Boards Association General Counsel Francisco M. Negrón Jr., was featured on C-SPAN’s “Washington Journal” discussing school safety and how school boards across the U.S. develop and implement emergency plans.

American School Board Journal and School Board News Today Articles

School Board News Today Articles on School Safety and Security


School Security After Sandy Hook
Addressing school safety doesn’t mean simply responding to the latest horrific shooting. Districts have to put school shootings in perspective and understand where the threats are more likely to come from. Schools should take an “all-hazards” approach that considers the best responses to a variety of emergencies.
ASBJ December 2013

School Safety Plans
Working together, schools and community partners can focus their emergency planning using time-tested national guidance, including efforts to build a positive school climate to establish relationships of trust and respect among students and staff in order to encourage them to share information about threatening behavior before an incident occurs.
ASBJ August 2013

Columbine's 10th Anniversary
Ten years after the Columbine High School shooting in Littleton, Colo. -- a day that is remembered as education’s 9/11—American School Board Journal interviewed school administrators and leaders in charge of the Jefferson County School District that day.

Communicating During a Crisis
School safety expert Ken Trump shows how school officials can communicate with internal and external constituents when responding to, and recovering from, a school safety incident. 

When Disaster Strikes Your Schools
Disasters come in many forms, both natural and manmade, but school districts that are prepared for the worst are better able to get back up and running in the aftermath. 

The Red Flags of School Safety
School safety consultant Edward F. Dragan advises on standards.

A Measured Approach
After a series of deadly shootings, experts urge schools to take thoughtful steps to ensure safety.

Safe from Harm
School law expert Edwin Darden writes that in the wake of several school shootings, a get-tough stance is tempting, but compassion and conversations are just as important.

Investing in School Safety
Lack of oversight on safety issues can cost districts millions of dollars in the damages awarded each year to families of children injured at school. 

Disaster Plans
How to envision the uncertain, prepare and plan for it, then do it all over again. Common traits to effective emergency planning include widespread communication, duplication in roles, and flexibility. 

Research and Reports

School Shootings and Student Mental Health - What Lies Beneath the Tip of the Iceberg
Recommendations created by William Dikel, M.D., Independent Consulting Psychiatrist, for NSBA's Council of School Attorneys. 

Student Perceptions of School Safety
Studies show that students who do not feel safe at school stay home. And when students aren't in school, they don't perform academically. The Center for Public Education’s Data First project discusses student perceptions and how school officials can help keep them safe.

Resources for School Attorneys

18 U.S.C. Sec. 922(q)(2)-(4)

Available for Council of School Attorneys members: School Law Primer - School Safety: Legal Pointers for Public Schools: September 2012

State School Board Associations and Other Resources

Connecticut Association of Boards of Education: Dealing with Tragedy

New York State School Boards Association:  “Tending to Our Youth”
The report recommends specific actions that school districts can take to increase school safety, including ways to identify possible warning signs of students at-risk and provide support to students who do not feel that they belong in the school community. (March 2013)

Missouri Center for Education Safety
U.S. Department of Education: Readiness and Emergency Management for Schools Technical Assistance Center

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services: Tips for Talking to Children and Youth after Traumatic Events

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