School safety is consistently a hot topic in K-12 education. As the public sees the number of school safety threats rising, whether it is gun violence or other risks such as extreme weather events, it is more important than ever that school communities have a comprehensive school safety plan in place.
Articles and blogs cover school security and safety tips for K-12 schools and districts often, but there is another way to get current and important school safety information: podcasts! The podcasting community has experienced an explosive growth of listeners over the past few years to an estimated 67 million people in 2017. According to Forbes, 25% of the U.S. population over the age of 12 were listeners in 2017, up 45% from 2015, and up a whopping 180% from 2009. With podcasts aligning with current trends across all industries, it only makes sense that experts in K-12 education are also jumping on board.
Three Podcast Episodes Covering School Safety
After doing some research on educational podcasts we’ve found three podcast channels that cover school safety as either the entire topic of the podcast, or in certain episodes:
- TrustED Podcast: Powered by K12 Insight – School Safety Series #1: Preparing for the worst
The first episode of the TrustED podcast covers school safety with two experts in the education field – Dr. Nora Carr, chief of staff at Guilford County Public Schools in North Carolina, and Dr. David Blaiklock, senior director of research at K12 Insight. One of the initial facts shared in this particular episode is “schools are the safest place children can be”. With this being said, 1/3 of parents believe there will be an incident of gun violence at their child’s school within a 3 year period. To mitigate fear for parents and students, Carr and Dr. Blaiklock discuss how it is the school’s responsibility to know what to do when there is a school safety threat. Sharing these plans with parents will instill confidence and ultimately assure parents their children are safe at school. Another topic discussed in this podcast episode is mental health. Dr. Blaiklock explains there are several steps K-12 schools can take to ensure they are monitoring and supporting students who may be facing mental health issues. When we look at the history of school shooters many have had substantial mental health issues, which is why it is important that schools address any mental health concerns as the first line of defense. Listen to the podcast here!
- Educator’s School Safety Network: School Safety News Podcast
This is the K-12 educators one-stop-shop for the latest in school safety news. Amy Klinger and Amanda Klinger are educators and school safety experts as well as a mother-daughter duo. They have open discussion on school security topics and analyze what’s going on in schools across the country. In their latest podcast episode they discuss a recent student threat in Parkland over the video game Fortnite. They continue the podcast episode by talking about a shocking story of a 6 year old elementary student calling 9-1-1 with a disconnected phone to report a fake school shooting. This young child reported to first responders that multiple people had been shot, when in actuality there was no school security threat. If you’re looking to stay up to date on school safety news, this is the podcast for you. Learn more here.
- I Want To Speak To The Principal: Episode 1 School Safety
This podcast discusses educational topics that influence leaders of schools, districts, and parents. In the school safety episode Michael Milstead and William Jeffrey start the podcast with how principals can assure parents that their children are safe in school. They discuss being transparent and having open lines of communication with parents by sharing day-to-day safety techniques and strategies as a key way to comfort them about their child’s safety in school. When the adults are taking school safety seriously, students are too. Every morning Dr. Milstead, former school principal, would speak on the intercom and tell his students to come forward if they’ve experienced or seen anything unsafe, or if there was anybody bothering them. He wanted them to feel comfortable coming forward to tell him if there were any problems. Listen more to this episode here.
Improving Your School Safety
Podcasts can be a great resource for educators to gain valuable information from experts in the educational field. Improving your school safety procedures doesn’t happen overnight, but working with staff, parents, and the students will help your school achieve school safety goals.
School panic button apps are a great school safety technology that thousands of schools are using across the country. Every day these schools are ready for school safety threats, emergencies, weather events, and more. With the push of a button administrators can trigger the mobile panic button activation which notifies staff and 9-1-1 immediately, drastically reducing response times.
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