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How schools can make outdoor learning safe and secure
How schools can make outdoor learning safe and secure

Schools were never designed and built with social distancing in mind. So it’s perhaps not surprising that as children returned to schools for the autumn term this year, the prospect of outdoor classes and assemblies was mooted in the media and by the Government. Many in the education sector are making the case that, should there be further COVID-19 outbreaks, in the coming months, it would be better to utilise outside space, rather than resort to closing schools. In the COVID-19 era, head teachers are considering taking learning and large gatherings, such as assemblies outdoors, when possible. Managing ‘class bubbles’, hygiene and ventilation While Dr. Yvonne Doyle, the Medical Director of Public Health England (PHE) has publicly reassured parents that schools are not the ‘drivers’ or ‘hubs’ of COVID-19-19 infection in communities, there is a lot of pressure on school leaders to manage ‘class bubbles’, extra cleaning and hygiene, ventilation, and COVID-19 testing, to protect families and staff. It’s a logical step to switch, in certain circumstances, to outdoor activities where fresh air is on tap, and social distancing is far easier to manage. Specially built outdoor classrooms Across the school and nursery sector, there’s ongoing investment in specially built outdoor classrooms Across the school and nursery sector, there’s ongoing investment in specially built outdoor classrooms, which had been growing in popularity, even before the pandemic. These facilities offer numerous benefits as an extension of existing learning spaces and provide children the opportunity for hands-on learning, beyond a stuffy classroom. However, if outdoor spaces are routinely called upon as part of COVID-19 contingency planning, how can schools ensure that their outdoor classrooms and wider areas are secure, robust, and fit for purpose? When specifying outdoor classrooms and learning spaces, it’s essential to take into account the well-being of the students and staff, who will use them, noise pollution and acoustics. Most importantly, education managers need to ensure the surrounding area is secured and adequately protected from threats, including terrorism. Perimeter security measures for schools How can schools and nurseries secure their perimeters, so that outdoor learning is totally safe for all? A starting point is to seek out architects and suppliers, who have a good understanding of security standards. Worryingly, Jacksons Fencing’s research recently found that only one-third of architects are seeing both LPS 1175 and the UK police initiative, Secured by Design (SBD) physical security standards, specified for schools. This highlights a lost opportunity for architects to propose solutions that are appropriate to the level of risk and needs of the school, without turning the site into an unwelcoming fortress. Helping schools identify specific security needs Head teachers would be wise to work with architects, who not only know the latest security standards inside and out, but are also are willing to play a more advisory role, helping the school identify exactly what is needed. Head teachers should prioritise solutions appropriate to their site’s specific risks It’s also vital that architects don’t simply replace existing fencing and gates, with the same security systems that have been in place for years. Instead, they will need to meet changing needs and risks. Our research finds that teachers often report issues, with the school perimeter and gates, from being climbed over (28%) and causing injury, to gates not locking properly (10%). Head teachers should prioritise solutions appropriate to their site’s specific risks, which sometimes require altering of existing measures. School fencing is an important aspect of any education site. As well as defining its boundary and making a visual distinction between public and private property, the fencing and gates that surround and secure a school, will typically meet a wide variety of other important criteria, including preventing unauthorised entry to the grounds, protecting pupils, staff, and visitors from accidents and injury, deterring theft and anti-social behaviour, and reducing the risk of malicious damage, and acts of terrorism. Welded mesh panels for perimeter fencing Popular options for schools include welded mesh panels for perimeter fencing or sports areas, and railing systems to act as demarcation, in order to control foot and car traffic. Within the outlying boundary, barriers, bollards and parking posts will keep pedestrians, and vehicles safe from each other, while timber fencing and gates can be designed to control the flow of people, around the grounds and reduce the areas, where students can be hidden from view. Automated gates and access control Perimeter fencing must be complemented with safe entrances and exits for vehicles and pedestrians. Every school has unique entry-control requirements, determined by factors, such as size, location and the local environment. These needs influence the decisions you make, when preparing technical specifications for school security gates. Do you require gates to be steel or timber, manual or automated, single or double leaf? Specialist suppliers will be in the best position to offer inputs on school gates, which typically need to offer solid security and durability, with a welcoming aesthetic. Specifying access control system When specifying a school access system, it’s important to consider the areas of the school When specifying a school access system, it’s important to consider the areas of the school, such as sports fields, car parks, and children’s play and learning areas, and whether it requires playground segregation. Selected gates should meet the design of the fencing, to create a secure perimeter with no weak points, with automated gates conforming to all current safety regulations. . Noise pollution can be a problem as well, including noise coming in or leaving the school in residential areas. If more teaching is to be carried out outside, it’s worth considering acoustic barriers to reduce noise in and around the school. Timber acoustic barriers for security and privacy Timber acoustic barriers offer security and privacy, and can reduce noise levels, by as much as 32 decibels (in laboratory conditions), so are ideal for city centre schools or those located close to busy highways. There are many ways to build an outdoor classroom. Timber products can help to create a welcoming environment, such as wooden shelters, pergolas, fencing, and decking. Always check that high quality timber, ideally guaranteed for 25 years against rot and insect attack, is being used to provide an attractive, cost-effective, safe and sustainable solution, for all weather conditions. DBS approved installers And of course, installers must be DBS approved, so that they can install outdoor classrooms, during school holidays, or within term time, with minimal disruption. The COVID-19 pandemic had a huge impact on schools and learning. While nobody wants to think of fresh outbreaks of the infection, or any other virus, installing an outdoor classroom made from high-quality, long-lasting materials is a great way to future-proof school learning and ensure safety, and preparedness. Putting extra thought and care into the security angle will provide schools with decades of protection against a host of unforeseen events.

What about electronic door locks with remote control?
What about electronic door locks with remote control?

Most consumers are enjoying the convenience brought by electronic locks. With the existence of electronic locks, people no longer need to be restricted by keys. There are a variety of unlocking methods and more convenient remote control unlocking options. Suppose, you are going on vacation, and with the presence of an electronic lock, you can easily enter your house with your babysitter, without a spare key. Of course, not only smart homes, but also some infrastructure and commercial buildings are enjoying the convenience, brought by electronic locks. Passive electronic lock access control system This article will introduce a smart electronic lock used in the infrastructure industry, named passive electronic lock access control system. In traditional manufacturing, mechanical locks are commonly used in all walks of life, to protect the safety of property and facilities. However, the mechanical lock has caused many practical problems in the long-term application. For example, the keys are duplicated randomly, the unlocking authority cannot be controlled, the user's operation records cannot be known, and the remote control is not possible. Imagine that if you are in a remote telecom base station, it happens that you have the wrong key in your hand and cannot open the front door. In such a situation, this lock, maybe the worst scenario. In some industries, with a wide scope and large working area, more attention must be paid to access control systems Therefore, in some industries, with a wide scope and large working area, more attention must be paid to access control systems. In some outdoor scenarios, such as base stations and electric power cabinets, the requirements for access control systems are quite strict. Due to the particularity of its environment, ordinary power-based access control systems will no longer be applicable. Therefore, the emergence of passive access control systems has solved these problems. Electronic locks offer intelligent management function Based on years of in-depth field research, Vanma has developed the Vanma passive electronic lock access control system, based on the current situation of the industry. This system is different from other electronic lock systems, as it integrates the advantages of both mechanical locks and electronic locks. It not only has the simplicity of mechanical locks, but also has the intelligent management function of electronic locks. The term ‘passive’ of passive electronic locks means that no power is needed. Passive electronic locks have the same appearance as ordinary mechanical locks, so they can be installed anywhere, just like common mechanical locks. They also have a variety of practical functions of electronic locks. Authorised remote access control The Vanma management software allows security managers to assign access rights to specific areas, for different technical personnel. In order to facilitate real-time access control, the electronic key can be used in conjunction with the mobile phone app, in order to send information about its access rights to the technicians, in real time. Vanma management software can provide access to all operations performed by technicians Vanma management software can provide access to all operations performed by technicians, including complete audit reports. Access attempts outside the specified time range or outside the specified area can be obtained through the report, so as to analyse any abnormal situations. Access control in extreme weather conditions In the access control system, the lock (lock cylinder) maintains an extremely high standard and its protection level is IP67, to ensure the greatest degree of protection. Infrared induction technology is used in the electronic key, even if the surface of the lock is wet, the electronic key can also transfer the access authority to the lock cylinder. Ensure stable exchange of information between the key and the lock cylinder. In other words, a poor connection cannot prevent the transmission of information between the key and the lock. At present, this kind of passive electronic lock is widely used in many fields, such as telecom, electric power, water utilities, public utilities, medical emergency and so on in Europe.

Access the right areas - Making a smart home genius with biometrics
Access the right areas - Making a smart home genius with biometrics

Household adoption of smart home systems currently sits at 12.1% and is set to grow to 21.4% by 2025, expanding the market from US$ 78.3 billion to US$ 135 billion, in the same period. Although closely linked to the growth of connectivity technologies, including 5G, tech-savvy consumers are also recognising the benefits of next-generation security systems, to protect and secure their domestic lives. Biometric technologies are already commonplace in our smartphones, PCs and payment cards, enhancing security without compromising convenience. Consequently, manufacturers and developers are taking note of biometric solutions, as a way of levelling-up their smart home solutions. Biometrics offer enhanced security As with any home, security starts at the front door and the first opportunity for biometrics to make a smart home genius lies within the smart lock. Why? Relying on inconvenient unsecure PINs and codes takes the ‘smart’ out of smart locks. As the number of connected systems in our homes increase, we cannot expect consumers to create, remember and use an ever-expanding list of unique passwords and PINs. Indeed, 60% of consumers feel they have too many to remember and the number can be as high as 85 for all personal and private accounts. Biometric solutions strengthen home access control Biometric solutions have a real opportunity to strengthen the security and convenience of home access control Doing this risks consumers becoming apathetic with security, as 41% of consumers admit to re-using the same password or introducing simple minor variations, increasing the risk of hacks and breaches from weak or stolen passwords. Furthermore, continually updating and refreshing passwords, and PINs is unappealing and inconvenient. Consequently, biometric solutions have a real opportunity to strengthen the security and convenience of home access control. Positives of on-device biometric storage Biometric authentication, such as fingerprint recognition uses personally identifiable information, which is stored securely on-device. By using on-device biometric storage, manufacturers are supporting the 38% of consumers, who are worried about privacy and biometrics, and potentially winning over the 17% of people, who don’t use smart home devices for this very reason. Compared to conventional security, such as passwords, PINs or even keys, which can be spoofed, stolen, forgotten or lost, biometrics is difficult to hack and near impossible to spoof. Consequently, homes secured with biometric smart locks are made safer in a significantly more seamless and convenient way for the user. Biometric smart locks Physical access in our domestic lives doesn’t end at the front door with smart locks. Biometrics has endless opportunities to ease our daily lives, replacing passwords and PINs in all devices. Biometric smart locks provide personalised access control to sensitive and hazardous areas, such as medicine cabinets, kitchen drawers, safes, kitchen appliances and bike locks. They offer effective security with a touch or glance. Multi-tenanted sites, such as apartment blocks and student halls, can also become smarter and more secure. With hundreds of people occupying the same building, maintaining high levels of security is the responsibility for every individual occupant. Biometric smart locks limit entry to authorised tenants and eliminate the impact of lost or stolen keys, and passcodes. Furthermore, there’s no need for costly lock replacements and when people leave the building permanently, their data is easily removed from the device. Authorised building access Like biometric smart locks in general, the benefits extend beyond the front door Like biometric smart locks in general, the benefits extend beyond the front door, but also throughout the entire building, such as washing rooms, mail rooms, bike rooms and community spaces, such as gyms. Different people might have different levels of access to these areas, depending on their contracts, creating an access control headache. But, by having biometric smart locks, security teams can ensure that only authorised people have access to the right combination of rooms and areas. Convenience of biometric access cards Additionally, if building owners have options. The biometric sensors can be integrated into the doors themselves, thereby allowing users to touch the sensor, to unlock the door and enter. Furthermore, the latest technology allows biometric access cards to be used. This embeds the sensor into a contactless keycard, allowing the user to place their thumb on the sensor and tap the card to unlock the door. This may be preferable in circumstances where contactless keycards are already in use and can be upgraded. Smarter and seamless security In tandem with the growth of the smart home ecosystem, biometrics has real potential to enhance our daily lives, by delivering smarter, seamless and more convenient security. Significant innovation has made biometrics access control faster, more accurate and secure. Furthermore, today’s sensors are durable and energy efficient. With the capacity for over 10 million touches and ultra-low power consumption, smart home system developers no longer have to worry about added power demands. As consumers continue to invest in their homes and explore new ways to secure and access them, biometrics offers a golden opportunity for market players, to differentiate and make smart homes even smarter.

Latest Adams Rite/ An ASSA ABLOY Group company news

ASSA ABLOY introduces ‘Upgrade Your Openings’ program to address the changing needs of building occupants
ASSA ABLOY introduces ‘Upgrade Your Openings’ program to address the changing needs of building occupants

ASSA ABLOY introduces its ‘Upgrade Your Openings’ program to support facility managers in addressing the changing needs of building occupants. With businesses, offices, and schools continuing to return to the workplace, efforts are being made to integrate touchless and automated solutions to create safer, healthier environments. Latest building requirements As part of the initiative, ASSA ABLOY is helping building managers address three emerging trends affecting commercial spaces post-pandemic: Rapidly evolving user expectations, driving demand for safer, healthier, and easier access to spaces, along with more aggressive security measures. More strictly enforced adherence to the latest building requirements, including the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) standards, and other building codes applicable to the jurisdiction and building type. Increasingly complex facilities management due to the increasing number and sophistication of building systems and security. More accessible environments The demand for healthier, safer, and more accessible environments is increasing" “As the economy rebounds and facilities begin to reopen, the demand for healthier, safer, and more accessible environments is increasing, and in turn, adding to the overwhelming complexity of building management,” said Sean McGrath, Head of US Commercial Sales and Marketing, ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions Americas. “‘Upgrade Your Openings’ is ASSA ABLOY’s initiative to help offices, schools, hospitals, and other public spaces address the challenges of post-COVID facilities while meeting increasingly strict codes and standards.” Increase energy efficiency ASSA ABLOY’s comprehensive solutions can support: Commercial offices: Wireless technology allows one to add access control to doors at a fraction of the cost of traditional solutions, making them an important option for upgrading the security of any facility. With hybrid work models becoming more popular and employees coming and going on a more irregular schedule, there may no longer be a need to have dedicated office space for each individual. Create flexible workspaces: Wireless cabinet locks. Easily retrofit openings: ES100 wireless integrated strike and card reader. Reduce touchpoints and germ transmission: Safer2Open solutions. Education: The pandemic has resulted in facilities, especially schools, needing to control the number of people in a given area to improve safety. Quickly gauge if a space is occupied: Status Indicator Locks by Corbin Russwin, SARGENT and Yale. Add hands-free solutions to any opening: Push/pull paddle trim. Eliminate catch points from clothing/equipment: Low profile, integrated trim. Healthcare: Applying touchless solutions to frequently used openings, such as doors in hospitals, can help reduce the spread of germs. Open a door with a simple wave: Norton 6000 Series Low Energy Door Operator with Wave to Open Switch. Add security and access control to equipment areas, nursing stations, and cabinets: Wireless access control locks. Add hands-free solutions to any opening: Push/pull paddle trim. Other public spaces: As more public places begin to open up, upgrades can be made to reduce germ transmission, control access, meet code requirements and increase energy efficiency on entrance doors, exterior building doors, interior doors, restroom doors, stairwells, gates, fences, containers and more. Easily electrify narrow stile aluminium openings: Adams Rite 4300 Electrified Deadlatch with compatible low-touch push/pull paddle trim. Intelligent and sustainable Securitron M680E EcoMag® Magnalock for all-glass openings. ASSA ABLOY is now offering a variety of training courses that feature products and solutions to help Upgrade Your Openings, including door controls, hands-free solutions, fire door, and security upgrades, and more.

ASSA ABLOY launches customer support app to enhance user experience and support
ASSA ABLOY launches customer support app to enhance user experience and support

With the ever-changing post coronavirus (COVID-19) world, the ability to communicate virtually has never been more important. This is why ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions UK & Ireland is improving its customer experience with the launch of the ASSA ABLOY Customer Support app. ASSA ABLOY Customer Support app Free to download on Apple and Android mobile devices, the app enables customers to quickly and conveniently contact the right customer service team within ASSA ABLOY in the UK. The app provides customers with remote technical product support via live streaming, alongside instant access to useful product resources. Its Door Hardware Group division will be the first to go live on the new app, enabling customers to contact all its renowned brands from one place. This includes UNION, ASSA, Dale Hardware, Excel Architectural Hardware, Exidor, Trimec, Adams Rite, and Securitron. Remote diagnosis and issue resolution Once downloaded, customers can use the app to directly contact the right department via phone, email or the new live chat and video call features. Additionally, they can find a direct link to the technical support team, who can offer remote diagnosis and issue resolution using the new live stream contact option. With COVID-19 restrictions in place, getting out to site and supporting has been a challenge. However, the app helps overcome this with its live video stream option, which allows issues to be resolved fast and effectively. Navigating ASSA ABLOY products To help customers navigate ASSA ABLOY’s broad range of products, the company has created a resource center that provides customers with direct access to technical product information and certifications, all in one place, at the touch of button. Support hours are shown within the app, depending on device location, and email options are offered if out-of-hours support is required. Customers can also take a photo using their phone and attach it to emails for easier troubleshooting. Remote contact and support Enabling remote contact is vital in providing our customers with quick and effective information" Jesse James, Financial and Commercial Director of the ASSA ABLOY Door Hardware Group, said “Improving our customers’ experience is paramount to our business, especially in these challenging times. Enabling remote contact is vital in providing our customers with quick and effective information, and has improved our customer experience through the launch of our app.” Jesse adds, “We continue to be committed to providing easier and more flexible ways to contact our business, receive technical product support, and for our customers to locate resources.” Easy-to-use and intuitive app Jesse further stated, "The new app is easy-to-use and intuitive, ensuring our customers have access to fast responses in real-time. Having the flexibility to choose how to contact our customer service teams, and for us to be able to quickly support customers on site with technical support is vitally important. The ASSA ABLOY Customer Support app allows customers to have everything they need in one place, and wherever they go.”

ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions Americas launches Safer2Open™ suite of hands-free solutions
ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions Americas launches Safer2Open™ suite of hands-free solutions

ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions Americas introduced its Safer2Open™ suite of hands-free solutions. Available across a variety of products, both mechanical and electromechanical, these solutions can reduce touchpoints without compromising functionality in a range of facilities, including healthcare, education, office buildings, and other high traffic spaces where decreasing the spread of germs is essential to public safety. “As the economy begins to reopen, there’s a surging need and demand for facilities to employ new approaches that enable healthier environments. From low-touch to completely touchless automated openings, ASSA ABLOY’s Safer2Open solutions include a range of cost-effective and low- to high-tech options for a myriad of facilities’ doors, from entrance to exit,” said Mark Duato, Executive Vice President, Aftermarket at ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions Americas. Post-COVID Technology and the New Normal Many state and local COVID-19 protocols recommend reducing the number of touchpoints in a facility, along with additional cleaning and sanitising protocols. Safer2Open products offer quick-to-implement solutions that can withstand rigorous cleaning cycles to align with these recommendations and improve facility safety as organisations adapt to this new normal. ASSA ABLOY’s Safer2Open solutions include – Low-Touch Solutions Trim options, such as SARGENT ALP Push/Pull Trim, Corbin Russwin HPSK Paddle Trim and Adams Rite Push/Pull Paddle Trim, are low-touch solutions that allow doors to be opened with minimal contact and can be added to virtually any opening to enable hands-free operation. Rockwood Hands-Free Arm and Foot Pulls allow access and egress without grasping hardware. These cost-effective options for hands-free door operation can be implemented in new and pre-existing aluminium, metal or wood openings. Sargent Electrified Closer-Holders keep doors open during high traffic times to minimise contact on door handles. Exit devices with Motorized and Electric Latch Retraction, such as Adams Rite 8000 and 3000 Series, Corbin Russwin ED5000 Series, SARGENT 80 Series Exit Device with Electric Latch Retraction and Yale 7000 Series, enable remote lock/unlock of a door, making it easier for people to move quickly and hands-free through virtually any opening. No-Touch, Fully Automated Solutions Low energy door operators from Norton are compatible with wave-to-open switches to offer an easy, contact-free method of opening doors. Wave-to-Open Switches, from Securitron and Alarm Controls, can pick up hand gestures within four inches of the switch to trigger operation for swing doors. Exit Motion Sensors, from Securitron and Alarm Controls, are egress options that minimises contact in high traffic areas. HES Electric Strikes enable remote locking and unlocking of an automated door and are available for all frame types and applications, including low profile, outdoor rated, aluminium and glass. These types of hands-free solutions are essential to public health and safety, enabling facilities to quickly implement solutions now, with existing infrastructure, while setting up their space to meet today’s increased hygienic standards.

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