Tennessee School for the Blind

Nashville, TN USA

During the master planning study, the goal of life and safely infrastructure is to narrow risk by creating concentric circles of protection. Emergency preparedness and response must be woven into every aspect of the learning space.

Administrators at Tennessee School for the Blind (TSB) have experienced significant budget cuts creating challenges to keep outdated life safety systems operational. The components below are identified as Infrastructure, Crisis Communication, Staffing and Procedures. TSB’s Safety and Security Master Plan encompasses these components and includes all current facilities on campus. The plan creates physical and operational consistencies that allow flexibility and scalability based on the unique challenges, environment and given threats for the campus.

Video/Audio Intercom

A video intercom system at each campus will allow the school to grant access through selected doors. Secondary schools require more student mobility which will require a video intercom at entrances such as the student parking lot, athletic and band areas and portable buildings. Elementary campuses will require a video intercom system at the main entrance and the staff entrance from the staff parking lot.

Access Control

All buildings should be brought up to current standards, which include access controls at the following doors: main entrance, security vestibules, custodial, kitchen, athletic, fine arts, bus loading, commons and all exterior corridor doors. The interior areas include the computer rooms, records, testing materials, audio/visual rooms and administration areas.

Security Vestibules

A security vestibule is a building entrance feature, comprised of walls and doors, configured to route foot traffic through the campus office or reception area prior to entering the building.

Campus Emergency Notification System

A campus emergency notification system will alert all staff members on and off campus that an emergency is approaching and evasive action is required. The plan is to use a notification system that delivers an emergency message from a single point of contact, to each computer screen where an incident is occurring, staff phones, and utilizing LED message boards in common areas to broadcast notifications and directions. This notification system requires an acknowledgement on the part of the recipient, ensuring the emergency message was delivered. Delivering an emergency message through this type of emergency notification system is much faster than the traditional phone tree method currently in place.