Our church operates an early childhood center and an elementary school. We keep the doors locked during the week. Staff members have access to the building either through access codes for use at select doors or through use of a key. Visitors, including parents, "buzz" for access during school hours.
It is a shame to me, that we have to manage access to our church and school this way. However, in these days, it seems a necessity and we want to be sure our students and staff are as safe as reasonably possible.
My questions are what are you doing about building security? Do church members have access to the building? If so, how and when? How do you balance the need for security with the desire to be an open and welcoming ministry?
Steve, Thank you for asking this question. Our church also operates a K-4 thru 8th grade school. We do our best to keep doors and gates locked during the school hours. We do have an open playground and activities on part of our parking lot. Staff members and church leaders have keys to enter the buildings. Visitors, including parents, are also "buzzed" to gain entry into the main building.
We are currently looking into security badges that will be printed by a company that specializes in this. The staff will have their names and picture on their badges, there will be a generic badge that will say Redeemer Lutheran Church Member and a generic badge that says Visitor. We are wanting to have the lanyards in different colors. For example staff will be green, church will be blue and visitor will be red. The idea being that with the color lanyard it will make it easier to identify what group that person would belong in and if they are not wearing a lanyard then that would have that person stand out and someone would immediately try to find out why they are on our campus.
The school staff is behind this idea 100%. There are church members, and not all are in the know about it yet, are not in favor. Some have difficulties dealing with change. I would be happy to supply the name of the company we are using if anyone is interested.
Redeemer Lutheran Church and School
Concordia Plans1333 S. Kirkwood Road Kirkwood, MO 63122