School Safety and Security Audit Toolkit

1.0 School Safety and Security Audit Guide

School safety is the responsibility of everyone: administrators, staff, teachers, students, parents, and the community. A safety and security audit provides an overview of facility safety and security by identifying areas that need improvement and those that are commendable. This proactive process ensures students are achieving their ultimate learning potential in a safe and secure environment.

The Texas School Safety Center (TxSSC) developed this School Safety and Security Audit Guide to assist schools and districts in conducting safety and security audits of their safety and security processes and facilities as required by Texas Education Code (TEC) 37.108(b). Specifically, the TxSSC designed the School Safety and Security Audit Guide to assist audit teams while conducting a comprehensive review of school and district facilities and operations. The guide provides information and task specific job aids for constructing a district or school audit team or teams, conducting safety and security audits, producing a written report, protecting sensitive audit information, and reporting results as required by current Texas statute.

The Texas Unified School Safety and Security Standards

The Texas Unified School Safety and Security Standards (the Standards) provide a set of criteria to assist school districts and charter schools in the development and implementation of comprehensive emergency management programs in keeping with laws and mandates. The framework of the Standards is based on the National Incident Management System (NIMS), which makes district and school emergency operations compatible with those of other governmental, private, and volunteer entities, providing the best possible safety for students, staff, and visitors.

The Standards are mapped to the Texas phases of emergency management as required by TEC 37.108 and as defined by the TxSSC in conjunction with the governor’s office of homeland security and the commissioner of education or higher education as applicable. These phases are required to be addressed in the district’s multi-hazard emergency operations plan (EOP): prevention, mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery.

The TxSSC school safety and security model audit procedures integrate the Standards into the safety and security audit process. Through the achievement of these standards, district schools, support facilities, and operations can develop and maintain quality emergency operations and preparedness to create a safe and positive learning environment. Attention to the Standards should be maintained throughout the safety and security audit process.