For many months I’ve warned that the use of classroom barricade devices and could allow unauthorized people to secure classrooms and commit crimes.  Several people have asked me for statistics on how many crimes have been committed behind secured classroom doors.  It’s impossible to compile any sort of meaningful data, and this news report from WBFF Fox 45 Baltimore illustrates why.  It’s shocking and difficult to believe, but many crimes in schools go unreported.  With these conditions in so many schools, I don’t understand why any district would take on the potential liability associated with failure to meet their duties of care.

The ability to lock classrooms and other areas should be limited to staff members, particularly when the security device can not be unlocked or removed from outside of the room.  Additional statistics have recently been released regarding sexual assault on school grounds, further illustrating the need for authorized control of lockable doors.

What research says and doesn’t say about student sex assault – The Associated Press

University of Michigan* researchers surveyed nearly 1,100 junior and high school students in the state about peer sexual assault, both in and out of school. The study, published in 2008, said about half of all girls and a fourth of all boys reported peer victimization of some kind…

* Note:  The Michigan State Fire Marshal’s bulletin on classroom barricade devices is here.

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