On Friday, Sept. 20, the ASIS Foundation will present Spencer Technology Academy, in the Chicago Public Schools (CPS), a donation of $42,450 for security improvements. “It is difficult to express what this award means to my school and the students and families that we serve in our community,” states Principal Dr. Shawn L. Jackson. The school will also be honored at a luncheon on Sept. 27 at McCormick Place.
Spencer Technology Academy is the winner of the ASIS Foundation’s School Security Funding Competition. Through a series of short essays, schools in CPS were asked to consider their particular security concerns and what risks they would attempt to reduce and/or eliminate, along with a list of specific security enhancements they would purchase with the funding. A committee comprised of security management professionals from the ASIS Chicago Chapter judged the submissions. “This is the tenth year that ASIS has sponsored this competition, as a way of giving back to the community where our Annual Seminar and Exhibits is held,” says ASIS Chief Executive Officer Michael J. Stack. “The aim of the competition is to encourage local schools to assess the security issues that confront their buildings, staff and students every day.”
Located on the west side of Chicago, Spencer Technology Academy houses nearly 930 students in grades PreK-8 in two separate buildings. Principal Jackson explains, “Unmonitored entrance points make our school vulnerable to unwanted access leading to equipment theft, violent activity, and criminal behavior.”
Proposed improvements include the addition of both indoor and outdoor surveillance cameras to act as a deterrent for potential wrongdoers and provide the staff the means to more closely monitor the safety of the children as they pass from one building to the other, as well as those entering and exiting the school.
ASIS International (ASIS), the leading organization for security management professionals worldwide, is the largest donor to this annual initiative to improve school security. To complement the ASIS $20,000 donation to Spencer, (ISC)2, through its Foundation, is donating its Safe and Secure Online Program to help students become responsible, ethical digital citizens. Safe and Secure Online has taught responsible computing to more than 90,000 students worldwide. Trained volunteers visit schools for free, teaching cyber-safety, cyber-security and cyber-ethics while fostering an interest in cyber careers. The Chicago school district, which is the 3rd largest in the country with 675 schools and 500k students, is aiming to implement the SSO program in its schools beginning this fall. A full listing of donors may be viewed on the ASIS Foundation website at www.asisfoundation.org.
Along with the award and donation, 60 students drawn from Chicago high schools, including Mather High School and Richards Career Academy, will attend a career day hosted by ASIS on Thursday, Sept. 26 at McCormick Place. All the students are in the Chicago Public Schools Career and Technical Education Law and Public Safety Program.
The day will be begin at 9:00am with a welcome and presentations from security professionals. The presenters will discuss their current position, their successes and challenges, what drew them to the field and advice on education and experience for someone wanting to enter the security profession, including characteristics and qualities that make for a successful security practitioner. The students will later visit the exhibit hall to view the latest security technologies.
The ASIS International 59th Annual Seminar and Exhibits (ASIS 2013) will be held Sept. 24-27 (Tuesday through Friday) at McCormick Place. With more than 200 educational sessions and 600+ exhibitors, this is the security industry’s leading event for security management professionals. For more information, visit www.asis2013.org.