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Case Study : The Deanes School, Benfleet

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Access Safety at The Deanes School 

With an awareness of the higher profile that pupil safety was accorded within Ofsted's 2009 Evaluation Schedule, bursar Lesley Smith - at the The Deanes School in Benfleet, Essex - was charged with addressing security risk issues.

Security risk analysis

Deanes School sign

A major, building access control consideration was identified and Guard Tec along with its building partner, GSR Construction Services, was selected to deal with it.

The school is a comprehensive with over 1000 students. It was one of the first 50 designated Sports Colleges in the country.

Situated on an 11 acre site and surrounded by woodland, the school was aware of the contribution this location makes to the pupil safety risk from unauthorised visitors/intruders.

The school's main building dates from the 1970s and comprises of three connected blocks which between them have 10 potential entry points. Prior to Guard Tec's intervention, these were being used freely by pupils for entry and exit. Minimal control was in place to log arrivals and departures - and only at recognised main doors. Clearly the building was vulnerable.

Adding the access control security

Guard Tec's solution was to provide a centrally controlled, electro-magnetic lock-based access control system across this set of doors (including doors that are DDA-compliant).

The doors are now all managed from a school administration computer. Each can be individually set on an automatic time schedule, where it may be required to be unlocked only for breaks and lunchtime, for example. The schedule can, of course, be overridden for manual control or operation if a fire alarm evacuation is required. An alarm is signalled if a door is forced when it should be in 'locked' mode.

ID system for authorised persons

Staff and other authorised persons now have ID badge/tokens which allow entry through the locked doors via adjacent token readers. Each person's entry points can be set according to need and the system records these access movements. This user group is expected to fluctuate in a range of between 150-200 people.
   
Installation at some of the doors/frames required remedial structural work by GSR, to compensate for their age and to meet today's expectations of a physically secure door entry point. Guard Tec's wiring connection of the doors to the central control point was achieved by installing a single, twin-core data cable.

A safer school

As a result, the school has a security-aware regime, limiting the number, location and timing of pupil access doors. Two doors have been designated as visitor arrival points, where all visitors must sign-in and be registered.

"Existing pupils experience some frustration in getting used to the new regime, which limits their movement patterns and reduces short-cutting, for example," says Lesley Smith. "However new year groups arriving will only ever know this new, safer and more controlled system of movement. It has made an important, demonstrable improvement to our safety risk management practices."

(Click to download this Case Study as a pdf via the top panel in the right hand column)

 

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Telephone: 0845 094 2992   Email: info@guardtecsecurity.com