How to tell if your child’s school is fire safe

Now that the back-to-school frenzy is over, here are some things you might not have thought to look at, like how safe is your child’s school? Jeff Wyatt, President of Koorsen Fire & Safety, says when looking at school safety, there are two very important aspects that we will discuss: Fire Protection and 2. Security.

Fire Protection: What to look for to make sure your school is safe:

  • Are there fire extinguishers that are easily accessible? Are all exits clearly marked and visible?
    • All exits should be clearly marked and emergency lighting should be visible. This helps to ensure all individuals can make it out of the building safely in the event of an emergency.
  • Are all fire alarm pull stations easily accessible?
    • These are scattered throughout the school to allow any individual to trigger the fire alarm system in the event of a fire. They always need to be easily accessible and should not be locked.
  • Are the sprinkler heads clear from clutter?
    • If you are in a room of the school and notice boxes piled up or decorations are hanging from the ceiling that are close in proximity to the sprinkler head, these can prevent the sprinkler head from dispersing the water effectively in the event of a fire.
  • Security: What to look for to see if your school is taking appropriate measure to keep the building and its students secure:
    • Security Cameras:
      • As a parent, you want to take a look around and make sure you spot both indoor and outdoor cameras as these help to deter criminal activity and can provide important footage to catch any unruly behavior.
        • Access Control Systems:
          • This is a very important tool in keeping any business safe, including school systems. However, many schools do not have full blown access control systems.
          • These systems allow school administrators to decide who can have access to the school, when they can have access, and which parts of the building are available to the public.