Report Finds Security Inadequate at 3 Calif. Colleges

The report recommended the colleges improve their communications systems, officer training and coordination with local police.

A grand jury report on the safety of the schools in the San Mateo County Community College District found several security issues it says need to be addressed.

The report, published July 5, highlighted unreliable communications systems, inadequate training and an overall lack of resources as major problems for the colleges. The grand jury has no authority to enforce the recommendations it made, according to

The district enrolls more than 26,000 students in total across the campuses of the College of San Mateo, Canada College and Skyline College.

The public safety force at the schools is comprised of unarmed, unsworn security officers that work in conjunction with local police agencies. The report found, however, that the cell phone and radio systems used by the colleges’ public safety officers are potentially unreliable because of the remote areas of the campuses.

“The grand jury recommended that the college district coordinate communications among its campuses and also work with local police to develop a better communications system, or work with mobile phone carriers to resolve ‘dead spots,'” the report states. “Improvements should be in place by the summer of 2017.”

The report also recommended additional training alongside police for public safety officers to improve coordination. Canada College held an active shooter training session with local law enforcement agencies in 2014, but no similar sessions have taken place since or are currently scheduled.

“It would be prudent to have regular and increased training between law enforcement, other emergency responders and campus public safety to ensure that all agencies are thoroughly prepared to work together in the event of a major natural or man-made disaster,” the report states.

District officials will have two months to formally respond to the report, although no action is required.

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