School Security

The Burlington School Committee recognizes the need to maintain safe and secure school buildings where students and staff are exposed to an inviting environment that stimulates learning and development. In order to accomplish the goal of safe and secure school buildings in Burlington, the following guidelines and procedures will assist professional and support staff in carrying out their responsibilities consistent with the recommendations of the Massachusetts Department of Education and the Burlington School Committee.

It shall be the policy of the Burlington School Committee that:

  1. For every day school is in session, all school doors will be locked fifteen (15) minutes after the official start time of the school day for that building.

  2. School security cameras may be placed at various locations at each school, including the front entrance and common areas, i.e. corridors, auditorium, etc. All security cameras will be connected to a recording device that will maintain a log of activity.

    a. For everyday school is in session, all school doors will be locked fifteen ( 15 ) minutes after the official start time of the school day for that building.

    b. School Security cameras may be placed at various locations at each school, including the front entrance and common areas, i.e. corridors, auditorium. etc. All Security camera will be connected to a recording device that will maintain a log of activity.
      
    c. Review of security recording will be limited to the building principal/assistant principal, the superintendent or other authorized school personnel or the Burlington Police and will be used only when investigating reported illegal activity, violations of the student conduct code, or to investigate persons who attempt to gain unauthorized access to the school.

    d. Security monitors, connected to the security cameras, will be placed in the school main office in two locations and will be monitored by school personnel during the day.

    e. A door bell, door access pad, and door chime, will be installed at the front door of each building. The door bell or door access pad will be utilized by all visitors who wish to gain access to the school.

    f. A speaker system will be installed at the front door to allow school personnel to communicate with the visitor prior to granting access to the building.

    g. The school principal or other authorized person shall grant access to visitors through a release button located in or near the main office after visual identification is made or the visitor’s purpose for requesting access to the school is accepted.

    h. All visitors are required to sign a visitor log and obtain a visitor pass from the school office before proceeding to any other part of the school. Visitors will be reminded to sign-out at the main office prior to leaving the building.

    i. The school principal, or other authorized person, shall investigate all unknown persons who attempts to gain access to the school building. The Burlington Police will be notified whenever an unknown person attempts to gain access to the school without good cause.

    j. Signage will be prominently displayed at all schools informing visitors that security devices are in use at the school and procedures for gaining access to the school.

    k. At the close of school each day, the principal, or other authorized person will deactivate the door locking mechanism for the front door to accommodate after school activities.

    l. During school vacation periods, including the summer recess period, the front door at each school will be unlocked unless ordered locked by the Burlington Police, school principal, or other authorized person.

    m. The Burlington School Committee will review the security guidelines annually with the school administration to consider recommended adjustments to the policy.

Visitor Admission and Protocols:

  1. All visitors will enter the school building through the front door.

  2. All front doors at each school will remain unlocked for a period of fifteen (15) minutes after the official start of the school day to accommodate students arriving late to school.

  3. All school doors shall remain locked during the regular school day unless deactivated by the school principal or other authorized person.

  4. All visitors will be granted access to the school via the front door after utilizing the door access bell.

  5. All visitors will notify school personnel about their visitation purpose before being granted access.

  6. Access will be granted by school office personnel, the building principal or other authorized person after visual identification is made or the visitor’s purpose for requesting access to the school is accepted.

  7. All visitors will be directed to the school main office where they will sign a visitor log and obtain a School Department Visitor Badge.

  8. Visitors who fail to report to the main office to sign-in or obtain a visitor badge will be reported to the building principal or other authorized person for investigation.

  9. School front doors will be unlocked five (5) minutes prior to the official end of the school day and shall remain unlocked for after school activities unless changed by the school principal or other authorized school personnel.

  10. All school employees with designated responsibility to operate the school security equipment which allows visitors to access the building will be covered by the following indemnification agreement:

    Whereas, __________________________has the responsibility of operating a security button that allows entrance to certain areas of the __________
    school building, the Burlington School Committee agrees as follows:

    To the extent allowed by law, the Burlington School Committee shall defend, hold harmless and indemnify _________________________________, against any claim or legal action that arises out of the performance of his/her duties in relation the operation of the school’s security system, which would include any claim or demand, or other legal action, whether groundless or otherwise, arising out of an alleged negligence or omission occurring in the performance of his/her duties relating to the school’s security system.

    Adopted by the Burlington School Committee: 9/13/05