First established in 2014, the Partner Alliance for Safer Schools (PASS) brings together expertise from the education, public safety and industry communities to develop and support a coordinated approach to making effective use of proven security practices specific to K-12 environments, and informed decisions on security investments.
The mission of PASS is to provide school administrators, school boards and public safety and security professionals with information, tools and insight needed to implement a tiered approach to securing and enhancing the safety of school environments based on their individual needs, nationwide best practices, and making the most effective use of resources available.
PASS supports efforts by communities throughout the United States to provide and sustain an effective level of security appropriate to each district and K-12 facility, recognizing that making schools safer is both achievable and urgently needed.
The PASS Story
School security is at the forefront of conversations around dinner tables, in administrator conferences, and at school board meetings.
The PASS story is one born out of concern and commitment for school safety, which began as an effort by the security industry and profession to answer questions from the education community concerning what can be done to better secure our schools. Led by the National Systems Contractors Association and the Security Industry Association, a partnership was formed among stakeholders united in interest and effort to help ensure that when a school system makes an investment in security, money is spent on the right solutions.
In 2015, PASS first released the Safety and Security Guidelines for K-12 Schools (the “Guidelines”), which remains the most comprehensive information available on best practices specifically for securing school facilities available. The fifth edition, released in October 2020, builds upon the existing guidelines primarily with additional best practices for architectural elements and the use of communications systems that enhance emergency response capabilities and includes a new section that examines promising emerging technologies that have garnered significant interest and have been piloted in schools, including vape detection and passive weapons screening technology.
The PASS Guidelines identify and classify best practices for securing K-12 facilities in response to urgent needs for information identified by the education community. The guidelines include:
- Specific actions that can effectively raise the baseline of security
- Vetted security practices specific to K-12 environments
- Objective, reliable information on available safety and security technology
- Assessment of current security measures against nationwide best practices
- Multiple options for addressing security needs identified, based on available resources
- How to distinguish needed and effective solutions from sales pitches on unnecessary products