Don Erickson

The new estimates from Secure Schools Alliance provide our advocates with real-life, hard numbers that they can use as the basis of a dialogue with legislators on how to best improve school security.

The Secure Schools Alliance recently created the first-ever school security construction cost estimates, and to do so, it relied upon school security and safety guidelines produced by the Partner Alliance for Safer Schools (PASS), established by the Security Industry Association (SIA) and National Systems Contractors Association (NSCA) to advise K-12 schools.

The Alliance’s construction cost estimates are available on the SIA School Security webpage​.

When discussing school security infrastructure and security technology, legislators and policymakers always ask: “How much will improvements cost?” These new cost estimates from Secure Schools Alliance provide a realistic look at the resources needed to take action. They are the first set of hard numbers based on a specific set of recommended guidelines for this purpose.

To create security cost estimates, PASS steering committee members first formed a baseline budget based on actual costs from Littleton Public Schools in Colorado, which used the PASS guidelines to upgrade security infrastructure and technology. Then, understanding that costs vary by market, the number of public schools in each state was considered and broken down by type (K-8, secondary and other) to determine what costs would be by state and school type for each PASS tier level.

“A lot of specialized expertise went into development of the PASS guidelines, and SIA is pleased to see those guidelines serve as the basis for national construction cost estimates,” said SIA CEO Don Erickson. “SIA is a strong supporter of the Congressional School Safety Caucus, a coalition of members of Congress collaborating on school security and safety issues, and the new estimates from Secure Schools Alliance provide our advocates with real-life, hard numbers that they can use as the basis of a dialogue with legislators on how to best improve school security.”

“While a few states—like New Jersey and Connecticut—have passed rules regarding security improvements for K-12 schools, there are still no approved national standards for such security infrastructure improvements,” said Robert Boyd, executive director of the Secure Schools Alliance. “The PASS guidelines represent an opportunity for the United States to embrace a consistent set of goals for security infrastructure, security technology and life safety systems for public schools while respecting local norms and not forcing unfunded mandates.

“Most incidents of mass violence in elementary schools (94 percent), and one-third of such events in middle and high schools are caused by intruders,” Boyd said. “We can stop intruders—and now we know what it costs to help do so. It is time to launch a national discussion about standards to improve the security of K-12 schools.”

To learn more about PASS, or to download a copy of the PASS guidelines, visit http://www.passk12.org.

For more information on the School Security Alliance, visit http://secureschoolsalliance.org.

About the Security Industry Association

The Security Industry Association (SIA) (http://www.securityindustry.org) is the leading trade association for global security solution providers, with nearly 800 innovative member companies representing thousands of security leaders and experts who shape the future of the security industry. SIA protects and advances its members’ interests by advocating pro-industry policies and legislation at the federal and state levels; creating open industry standards that enable integration; advancing industry professionalism through education and training; opening global market opportunities; and collaboration with other like-minded organizations. As a proud sponsor of ISC Events expos and conferences, SIA ensures its members have access to top-level buyers and influencers, as well as unparalleled learning and network opportunities. SIA also enhances the position of its members in the security marketplace through SIA Government Summit, which brings together private industry with government decision makers, and Securing New Ground®, the security industry’s top executive conference for peer-to-peer networking.

About the Secure Schools Alliance

The Secure Schools Alliance and Secure Schools Research and Education is taking a leadership role in launching a national conversation about the issue of school safety and advocating a course of action for addressing it. This convening of education, industry, public safety, law enforcement, corporate and community leaders will work together to ensure the security of our nation’s schools through federal and state policy, legislation, research, pilot programs and the promotion of best practices. The goal is to improve the security infrastructure, security technology and life safety systems of all public K-12 schools.​

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