Ask the Expert (Safe Space)
What Solutions Are Available to Secure Classrooms?
- By Stephen St. Amour
- November 1st, 2016
While active shooter statistics continue
to rise, other violent incidents within schools
are increasing, such as student-to-student or
peer-to-peer, all of which need solutions that
can keep individuals safe and away from harm.
Without a doubt, the most important elements
to consider when protecting classrooms are having
the ability to lock the door from the inside
and the ability for safe egress.
According to the final report of the Sandy
Hook Advisory Commission, “There has never
been an event in which an active shooter has
breached a locked classroom door.” With events
being over in five minutes or less, it is important
to get students, teachers and administrators sheltered
behind a locked door as quickly as possible.
Although barricade devices have become
popular recently, they do not meet life and
safety fire code, and usually require certain
tools and knowledge to operate. However,
there are many code-compliant lockdown
solutions that can harbor individuals into a
safe space which include:
Storeroom Function Lockset: Used
when the outside lever is locked at all times,
but does not have the ability to be unlocked or
locked from the inside.
Entrance Function Lockset: Utilizes a
push button on the inside to lock the door that
locks the outside handle, while allowing for
Security Function Lockset: Allows the
door to be locked by key on the inside, removing
the risk of a teacher having to enter the
hallway to lock the door.
Electronic Classroom Lock: Ability to
press a fob-based device to immediately lockdown
the classroom doors while simultaneously
notifying first responders.
This article originally appeared in the November 2016 issue of School Planning & Management.
Stephen St. Amour, AHC, CDT, has 23 years in the door and hardware industry and is the director of Architectural Services for Stanley Security. He can be reached at email@example.com.