Parents expect their children to be safe and well cared for while attending an early childhood education center. Focusing on security measures is essential to protecting little ones and your staff.
Centers must implement safety measures, including security cameras, door locks, and more, to prevent unauthorized individuals from entering the facility. But you can’t just focus on keeping people out of the facility. You also need to ensure that dangerous areas of the center are locked to prevent curious children from touching dangerous equipment or getting stuck somewhere.
Implement these safety measures to keep everyone safe and provide parents with the peace of mind they’re looking for.
6 Childcare Safety Measures
Start with these essential safety measures when working to provide a safe environment in your preschool or childcare environment.
- Security Cameras
Implementing security cameras gives you documentation of what happened inside your center at any given time. But it also enables more proactive protection. In case of any missteps, you’ll know whose fault it was.
An office staff member can constantly monitor the various spaces within the center in real-time. Having another person watching for danger or problems is beneficial.
If you’re worried about the upfront expense of security cameras, you can start with some pointed at the entryway and a few exterior cameras to watch outdoor traffic. That way, you can detect concerning behavior or unauthorized activity early.
But as you get more established, consider adding cameras in each classroom, gym, playground, etc. Make sure children have privacy during diaper changes and while using the restroom. No parent wants to wonder what might be happening with that footage or be worried about your system getting hacked.
- Fire Alarms
More than likely, you have a fire alarm in every room to be compliant with building codes. But it would help if you had processes for checking the alarms and updating their batteries.
If you can afford it, installing fire alarms with an integrated security software you can monitor remotely would be great. If anything happens while the center is closed, you can review it from your phone before getting too concerned or jumping out of bed to drive over and attend to it.
- Keyless Entry
Give parents the freedom to enter the center with a card, code, fingerprint, or even a mobile device using a keyless entry doorknob and lock. The front desk will still have the power to let visitors in for tours, deliveries, and meetings, but that will require a manual switch.
When using a keyless entry system, purchase one that allows you to disable it during off-hours. You don’t want parents, staff, or other authorized users in the building when it is supposed to be closed. You can provide administrators a key to get in during those off-hours. If your system doesn’t have this functionality, you can add a deadbolt to the door to lock things up when you leave each day.
Door security is essential. All doors other than the entryway should have strong locks to prevent unauthorized entry. And those doors should lock automatically when someone closes them to ensure your center is always as secure as possible.
- Entryway Call Station
No matter how you secure the front door of your center, it would be best if you had a call station for visitors or authorized users to reach the front desk staff. Parents might forget their code, have left their smartphone at home, or be experiencing another disruption to their regular ability to access the center.
The call station should be active during open hours and have a staff member familiar with parents and students who can screen everyone before providing access.
It would help if you had a log of every expected visitor for the day, including prospective parents who have requested a tour. Do not allow for drop-ins to prevent security concerns.
- Front Desk Staff
Ensure that someone is at the front desk at all times during the day. They should be watching the exterior and entryway cameras to spot suspicious activity and call law enforcement about anything that concerns them.
It also protects children from wandering around the center if they get separated from their class or out of their classroom for any reason. It’s one more line of defense to protect against unknown threats.
- Sign-in and Out Procedures
Require all visitors to sign in and out when entering and leaving the facility. You can do this digitally for parents and even auto-sign them in and out using smartphone technology that is tied to the wireless door opener. It might sound annoying, but it will provide a log of all activity in the building daily.
Do not allow parents or caregivers to share access codes, though. A shared code makes it challenging to know which caregiver picked up the child without reviewing camera footage, which will take longer in case of an emergency.
All other visitors will need to complete the process manually. While it might seem cumbersome and like it will detract from the customer experience for prospective parents, it will give them peace of mind knowing your center is one of the best for security.
iCare Software Childcare Management Safety Tools
iCare Software is one of the leading childcare apps available. You’ll get many outstanding security features to keep your center safe.
- Lobby app: check children in from any device, anywhere. This includes the bus stop, field trip meetup location, etc. Parents and caregivers must be authorized to sign children in and out.
- Lobby questions: ask parents custom questions when they are registering their child. This can help with field trips or choosing the child’s lunch menu for the day.
- Signature and photo validation: capture a photo or a parent’s signature during the check-in and check-out process to validate attendance.
- Wireless door opener: allow authorized individuals access to the building while preventing unnecessary activity.
- Messaging: teachers and staff members can message the lobby and vice versa. That way, teachers know when a student arrives or can ask if a student is absent today.
Secure your center by implementing the most modern childcare software technology. Schedule a demo now to learn more.