Following the Uvalde school shooting, Governor Abbott tasked the Texas Education Agency (TEA) with defining requirements for minimum safety in schools as well as determining the costs associated with the new requirements. Now, the TEA has released its preliminary proposed school safety standards for all K-12 public schools in the state.
Below are some of the proposed rules.
The proposal states exterior doors (including exterior classroom doors) and portable doors be operating properly and are required to remain closed and locked while allowing for emergency egress from the inside. This rule applies at all times, unless the door is actively monitored or within a secure area and it is during school hours.
Any window on a door on the ground level, or windows near a door or large enough to enter through if broken, have entry-resistant film applied to them to hinder breaking and entering.
The proposal also calls for panic alarm systems. These would be either a physical button for staff to press or an option on their phone that would notify all staff and administrators of the emergency as well as begin a 911 call. This alarm would also trigger any electronic locking systems that may be in place on the doors. One important requirement of this system is that the alert must include the location of where the alert was initiated to aid first responders in finding the emergency quickly.
Similarly, the local police department should be given a site plan of the school or campus with all exterior doors numbered for quick coordination of response efforts during an emergency.
The proposal suggests weekly checks of all doors to ensure they are in working order as well. This allows for repairs to be made before an incident can occur.
The proposal is up for public review and will then have the chance to be revised. DHI has provided the full proposal here.
For any information on school safety and bringing your facility up to code, or adding additional security beyond the minimum requirements, contact Door Control Services and DH Pace. We have teams who specialize in education and security, as well as compliance to ensure your security measures still meet all necessary fire and lift safety code requirements. We’re ready to help you secure your students, staff, and facility.