“Securing the Child Care Facility: A Comprehensive Guide to Creating a Secure Environment

in New and Existing Buildings Used in the Care of Young Children”.

By Steve Keller and Alicia Ricci

The authors have developed a comprehensive plan for assessing risk and securing the childcare center. They analyzed crime statistics involving elementary and pre-schools and determined that the solution needed in childcare facilities for young children differs from the approach needed for older kids. Once they understood the true risks, they were able to develop a plan that any childcare facility can use and afford.  This manual includes a set of draft national standards submitted for approval by the industry security group that maintains such standards as well as a set of building blueprints for a childcare facility with excellent security. The blueprints make it easy to fully understand the concept and level of security needed to meet a variety of risks.  The authors found that the solutions needed for a large number of risks including an active shooter and a tornado are the same. Also included is a self-assessment checklist childcare center operators can use to survey their facilities.

The authors are two of the leading security consultants in the nation, and principals of Steve Keller and Associates, Inc. an international security consulting and security system design firm.

When an older child enters a school and shoots his classmates it is usually because the shooter was bullied, teased or made to feel like an outcast. This never happens in a daycare center. When very young children are killed by a shooter while at their school, it is usually because they were “collateral damage” when the spurned lover of a teacher shows up to kill her in front of her students and adult support system of co-workers. Of course there are those incidents like Sandy Hook Elementary when the shooter was obviously insane, but the authors found that it is possible to build childcare centers that make it nearly impossible for a shooter to successfully harm any child or teacher.

As bonus, the same countermeasures also provide excellent protection against a tornado. Most of the risks that children face while in childcare can be prevented by following the plan laid out in this manual including false accusations of wrongdoing against childcare workers as well as actual wrongdoing by staff.  The authors note that hundreds of millions of dollars are spent by Federal and State governments that provide tax breaks, grants, low interest loans, price supports, and other incentives to private industry. There is no reason that the childcare industry can’t lobby to seek funding so their members can implement the plan laid out in this manual.




What’s In This Manual? Check Out The Table of Contents

PART 1  Securing the Childcare Facility

Forward, Preface, About the Project

Security Risks That Children Face at Childcare

Analysis of Shooting Incidents in the U.S.

Natural Disasters

Dangerous Adjacencies

Spillover Crime

Custody Disputes

Domestic Violence

Sandy Hook/Columbine Type Assault


Summary and Conclusions

Another Risk We Need To Consider:  False Accusations Against Childcare  


Mixed Use vs. Dedicated Facility

Assessing Security Risks At Any Specific Address

Sample CAP Index Property Management Survey, Crime Cast Color Coded Map, Crime Statistic Analysis

How Murderers Pull It Off

Major Elements of Good Child Care Center Security

How Can We Neutralize Violent Acts That Occur at the Childcare Center?

Physical Security:  The First Line of Defense

            Door Hardware for Childcare Centers; Access Control Systems for   

            Childcare Centers; Burglar Alarm Systems for Childcare Centers; CCTV

            Systems for Childcare Centers; Mass Notification Systems for Childcare


How Viable is a Strategy of Sheltering in Place?

The Safe Room

Meeting Force With Force

Security While Out of the Building

The Playground; On Busses

At the Bus Storage Facility; Field Trips--At the Event Venue

Policies and Procedures: Security Policy Manual

Staff Training

Communicating With Parents

Privacy and Secure Record Keeping



PART 2:  The Recommended Guidelines for Securing the Child Care


PART 3:  Self Assessment Checklist

PART 4:  Staff Training Handouts

                Surviving An Active Shooter Event in the Childcare Center

                Surviving A Tornado in Your Childcare Center

                Surviving An Earthquake in Your Childcare Center

                Telling Your Childcare Employer About Your Abusive Partner

                Pre-Screening Visitors and Parents Before Admitting Them to Your 


This manual includes architectural drawings that teach you about all of the topics discussed. There are drawings that show the floor plan, a set showing alarms and access control systems, one set showing CCTV cameras, etc. You will understand how all of these, and other, security components work together to provide a secure environment. These drawings are not intended to be “buildable”, that is, you will need to have your architect or general contractor produce shop drawings. These are for concept only.

One of the most popular sections of this manual is a Self Assessment Checklist that childcare center operators can use to conduct a self assessment survey of their facility.

NOTE: This book is now available only digitally in PDF format. Why is it no longer in print? Because the blueprints can be printed in full blueprint size from the PDF.  It is extremely difficult if not impossible to format a digital book with blueprints in other eBook formats for use on book readers. The printed version is no longer available because the blueprints can’t be easily read in 8 1/2 by 11 inch format.

About the Authors

Steve Keller is the senior partner for, and founder of, Steve Keller and Associates, Inc. In his early career he was a child abuse detective for the Washington, D.C. Metropolitan Police Department and later served as a Special Agent with the federal government where he provided executive protection for a government official. He has been President of Steve Keller and Associates, Inc. since 1986. Keller has published over 35 articles in professional publications and has produced over 40 security training videos. He chaired several national committees in the security profession and is a graduate of American University, Washington D.C.

Alicia Ricci is a partner of Steve Keller and Associates, Inc.  Alicia is a native of Venezuela and practiced architecture for several years before becoming involved in the construction trade as a building inspector. While she no longer practices architecture in the US, she is an experienced security consultant with an understanding of the risks that child care facilities face. She holds a degree in Architecture from the University of Zulia in Maracaibo and has been with the firm since 2000.

Steve Keller and Associates, Inc is a leading security consulting and security system design firm with over 950 clients worldwide. Founded in 1986, it specializes in projects involving architects as well as projects in facilities with high value assets. In addition they have done projects for over 40 colleges and universities. They offer security consulting, training and security system engineering services, often to other consulting firms.  It is based in Ormond Beach, Florida.

Where can I buy this manual?

You can buy this product direct from the publisher for $99.95 and the price includes shipping and handling by U.S. Priority Mail within the U.S. We take all major credit cards. We ship the same day the order is placed. (386) 235-7500. We take all major credit cards.

Steve Keller & Associates, Inc.

101 Marketside Ave. Suite 404 #135

Nocatee Town Center

Ponte Vedra, Florida 32081

(386) 235-7500

Our website: www.stevekeller.com

Call today to place your order for immediate delivery

Now available in digital only.

In the blueprints, which are provided in the manual as well as on a CD in PDF format that you can enlarge on your computer, the authors propose a series of “secure barriers” between the reception area and the classrooms and safe rooms built to both tornado and ballistic specifications, adjacent to each classroom.

PART 5:  Building A More Secure Childcare Center

     Operational Scenario

     Architectural Feature Descriptions