School & Church Security Services & Assessments
Dave O. the Owner and President of Blackstone Investigations Group, LLC, spent numerous years serving on one of the largest most productive school boards in South Jersey and has extensive knowledge in school security and security camera systems.
Given the recent number of school and church shootings over the past 10 years it is clear that violence can happen anywhere, even at your church. Unfortunately, no amount of planning can stop someone from wanting to harm others. Nevertheless, having a prevention and response plan in place can make your school or church a more difficult target and can help reduce the harm if violence occurs. Let the experienced team of law enforcement and security professionals at Blackstone Investigations Group train your in house security team and/or provide you with plain clothes or uniformed armed security personnel to work closely with your staff.
At BIG, we believe that safety and security programming in an academic or church setting is a delicate balance of responses to and preparation for
potential risks. Criminal or other aberrant activities, school and community emergencies, and existing organizational mission and
culture, as well as cost and perceived need, are all elements of importance. A “systems” approach that includes the application of
security and safety technologies and appropriate policies and procedures, as well as the assignment of individual and organizational
responsibilities to various personnel and entities, is required if this effort is to be successful.
Blackstone’s safety and security programming efforts need to be consistent with the risks inherent to each campus’s environment and with the school boards mission.
The key to a successful safety and security programming is a viable technology infrastructure, the development and implementation of an appropriate philosophy and policies, the support of key school administrators, and the empowerment of professionally trained, properly equipped personnel.
School Security and Emergency Preparedness Assessments…
- Reduce potential liability risks
- Reduce crime, violence, and disruptive behavior risks
- Improve school-community relations on safety issues
- Identify specific strategies to make your schools better prepared and more secure for children and staff
What is a “School/Church Security and Emergency Preparedness Assessment”?
Our security and emergency preparedness assessments provide school administrators and church leaders with an independent appraisal of safety measures already in place, and recommendations for enhancing those measures with improvements at the building and district levels. School leaders use our security and preparedness assessments as:
- School-community relations tool to demonstrate a district’s commitment to security prior to a crisis
- Documentation of school district needs in advance of a levy campaign, or as part of a grant proposal
- Risk management tool for reducing crime and violence threats, risks, and potential liability while strengthening emergency preparedness
School/Church security and preparedness assessments are district-specific to address your unique concerns and needs, not pre-packaged comments and forms with a few name changes. They are designed to help those involved be proactive, not reactive, with regards to safety.
At Blackstone Investigations Group, we believe it is important for our assessments to reflect both the positive safety measures already in place, as well as the areas for continued planning and improvement. Our final assessment reports are designed to be used as a strategic planning tool — not an attack on a school or worship centers management and/or credibility. Bottom line…WE ARE ALL ON THE SAME TEAM!
What is evaluated in a security and emergency preparedness assessment?
Areas reviewed by Blackstone Investigations Group or its affiliates can include:
- Personnel and internal security
- School emergency and crisis preparedness planning
- Linking of security with prevention and intervention services
- Security, crime and violence prevention policies and procedures
- School security and school police staffing and operational practices
- Professional development training related to safety and emergency planning
- School-community collaboration and partnerships with public safety agencies
- Communications and social media strategy, crisis communications, and community building techniques
- Physical security measures including access control, communications, intrusion detection systems, perimeter security, after hours security, physical design, and many related areas;
- Examination of support service roles in school safety and security, including facilities operations, food services, transportation, pupil services, physical and mental health services, technology services, and associated school departments.
What methods are used by our team?
Our pre K-12 school-specific security and emergency preparedness experience has allowed us to create a structured, specialized assessment process which can include:
- Crime and discipline data review
- Examination of physical facilities and grounds, physical security measures and related issues
- Examination and problem-solving of safety concerns unique to a given school and school district
- Review of crisis and other communications mechanisms, social media strategy, and related areas
- Analysis of policies, procedures, emergency and crisis guidelines, and other safety-related documents
- Surveys and structured interviews with staff, students, parents, first responders and other members of the school community
- Analysis of related news, crime, and other information from public sources that may indicate how the community views the schools
To save you time and money, we provide a pre-assessment checklist of documents and data we would like to review to help us identify specific information for analysis before we arrive on-site. As consultants who have first-hand experience working in school districts, we are flexible and will try not to disrupt the educational process while working in schools with our clients.
The number of evaluators can range from a two-person consultant team to multiple teams of evaluators, depending on the size of the school district and nature of the assessment. This will be discussed in advance with the client district. Each lead evaluator/consultant has over 20 years of full-time experience in the school safety field and every project is led by our Owner/President, David Ollivier. On-site assessments may also be linked with our training programs.
Communications and social media evaluation in safety assessments
We can work with your administrators and communications staff to review communications policies and protocols, identify ways to coordinate messaging with partner agencies, and share the latest strategies, from traditional to digital media. Our expertise comes from extensive news reporting and newsroom management at media companies across the nation. Our work with preK-12 public and private schools connects us to your challenges: from dealing with violence to building support for a school levy campaign. We can give you skills to take control of this critical aspect of managing school safety and running a school system.
Our final assessment consultation report
Our findings and recommendations are submitted in a final written report to school officials. We focus our reports to reflect both the positive school safety measures already in place at the time of the evaluation, as well as areas for continued planning and improvement. The final assessment report can be used as:
- An independent source of professional information to create realistic activities and measurable goals for short-term security and emergency preparedness improvements and long-term strategic plans. Our assessments provide detailed recommendations.
- Part of an overall program evaluation to periodically measure progress and make revisions in established school security and preparedness programs.
- A concrete public relations tool for demonstrating a commitment to having a thorough, external, and professional assessment of security and emergency preparedness, as part of an overall prevention, intervention, and school safety program.
- Evidence of having conducted a professional needs assessment that can be used to meet federal and state grant proposal requirements for safety and emergency planning funds, as we all identification of specific local needs for future district funding plans.
If your school, school district or place of worship is in need of armed security officers, plain clothes security officers or an assessment of your current security program, please contact us immediately so together we can formulate a plan to keep your students, faculty and staff, and parishioners safe. CALL US TODAY so we can get to work for you!