San Jose Patrol Discusses School Security Tips
It’s that time again! If you’re a parent, then you know exactly what we’re talking about. That bittersweet time when you send your little ones off to school and realize that they aren’t so little anymore. Nostalgia aside, this can also be a time of anxiety for many parents.
We’ve all heard horror stories, and the professionals at Orion Security—your favorite Bay Area security company—have compiled a list of things you can do to keep your loved ones safe this year.
1. Phones can save lives! If your child will be walking, riding with friends, or participating in extracurricular activities, a cell phone can seriously improve their safety. Using proper parental controls and a tracking app can help you locate your child in any situation.
2. Never send your kids out alone. Utilize the “buddy system” and make sure that your child has someone else with them when traveling to and from school, and at other times when they may be vulnerable.
3. Know their routes. Knowing exactly where your children are supposed to be at all times can help you plan ahead. Make sure that they only travel in well-lit areas and that someone in the neighborhood is aware of when they should be passing by. Checkpoints can help prevent lost children and give you a second set of eyes. Also, avoid planning routes through areas known for criminal activity.
4. Teach them “Stranger Danger.” Make sure that your children understand to avoid strangers, and to never get in a car with someone they don’t know—regardless of false promises or coercion.
5. Make sure that your child has access to and uses safety gear when riding their bicycles or skateboards to school.
6. Teach your children to dial 911 and to seek out safe public spaces as soon as someone follows them or makes them uncomfortable.
7. Giving your child a discreetly placed “panic” button when traveling on foot can help draw attention to them when they feel threatened.
8. Communicate with the school or with someone at your child’s destination. This gives you another reassurance that they’ve arrived safely and allows you to react quickly if they don’t.
9. Let them know that they should never take a ride from someone they do know without a parent’s permission.
10. Don’t take gifts. Teach them to never take something (food, candy, gifts, money) from someone that you don’t know or who isn’t approved by parents or teachers.
11. Parents should check their children’s phones and social media accounts for suspicious activity on a daily basis.
12. Make sure that children know your phone number, address, full name, and the same information for one other adult by heart. Memorizing this can help them contact you sooner in the event of an emergency.
13. Having a backup plan when a child comes home to an empty house is also important. Emergencies happen to adults too, and it can help to teach your child to seek out a neighbor if they arrive home and no one is there.
14. Teach children to lock the door when they arrive at home, and to avoid going in if the door is unlocked, already open, or damaged in some way. This lessens the chance of them walking in on a burglary.