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Mar 15, 2017 07:49 AM EDT

Campus Safety: Questions Every Parent Should Ask - Part 2

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Campus safety is a great concern for parents. After all, they are sending their kids under the protection of a college or university so they should be informed of whether the institution is well-equipped to take care of its students.

It was reported that concerns about the safety of American campuses have heightened due to reports of increasing violence in higher education institutions. U.S. News shared questions that parents need to ask about their child's prospective college or university. The first part of this series can be found here.

What prevention programs does the school have to educate students about campus safety?

Colleges and universities should educate students about how to be an active bystander. This means that they ought to know how to step in when they see another student facing a potentially dangerous situation. Ideally, the program should include tips for risk reduction and prevention strategies as well as suggestions for how bystanders can intervene without risking their safety.

How does the institution protect students who live outside of the campus?

For students who may not live on campus for all four years, parents should ask the school whether they can help students find safe and reliable off-campus housing. Experts say that some institutions even provide legal services to help students make sense of housing agreements.

How does the school handle significant issues and violations on campus?

Parents and students should do their research and understand campus policies regarding significant issues like alcohol and drug use as well as how violations are handled. Students can ask current students about the campus culture.

How does the college or university protect students during a natural disaster?

While crime and substance abuse are safety hazards, parents should also know what protocols schools have established to respond to natural disasters. Prospective colleges and universities should explain how they work with local authorities, what their evacuation plans are and how often they test their safety and security plans.

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