I had pretty disturbing experience today. We went for a little shopping tour to look for an additional gym for our gymnastics club. Visited about 12 schools, including high, middle and elementary schools, public and catholic. I am seriously scared and will be discussing this with my chldren and I strongly recommend that you do the same.
2. All schools had "Area under video surveilance" signs, but the cameras were all located in such areas that they will never catch person's face unless she/he looks up.
3. None of the schools asked us for name, occupation or ID, or even a business card!!!! None of the schools asked to sign in/out in the visitors' journal. I know, I don't look like serial killer but neither did Karla Homolka.
4. We did proceed to the main office first and asked for the caretaker. Only one caretaker took as to the gym, followed us everywhere and excorted us to the exit. Rest – just waived to us in the direction of the gym and allowed us to wonder around and leave as we please.
5. At two schools we got stopped by the personnel and asked about the purpose of our visit and whether we checked in the office. 2 out of 12!!!! Rest of the folks just didn't care, and this is including elementary schools where little ones were literally running around us – free for grabs.
6. At one school we noticed security guards, uniformed and fully equipped, but they just walked past us.
Now, I know, I would not harm a kid in million years. Actually I can only seriously harm and adult if he tries to harm a kid. But wouldn't it be just normal safety rules for the school personnel to follow?
Do NOT let ANY stranger to wonder freely around the school!!! And until you have seen person's ID – it is a stranger, no matter what he tells you.
You go into any company – bank, transportation, anything- you are stopped at the reception, you are forced to sign in and you are given a Visitor's badge, that you'd better wear, or you will be thrown out by the first human being that sees you without the badge.
So, we are very keen about protecting our financial secrets, trade know-hows and bank statements, but we are just criminally careless when it comes to the most precious thing in our lives – our children!
How difficult could it be for every visitor to check in the office? sign in, present your ID, get a badge. You are walking around the school with no badge – police gets called, end of story.