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School Safety Audits and Assessments

School Safety Audits and Assessments Overview

Jennings Smith Associates offers a holistic approach to School Security, Safety and Emergency Management in support of school districts’ commitments to providing safe and secure learning environments for students, teachers, administration and staff.

You've got questions. We've got answers. Call 1-866-629-3757 to speak to a private investigator or security consulant.We are a licensed security firm that has conducted school safety audits and assessments in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and throughout the United States for the past 35 years. Since 1997, we have been actively engaged in providing security audit and assessment services as well as informational support to public, parochial, and private schools; state and local government agencies. We are the Security on Call Consulting Firm contracted by the State of Connecticut, Department of Public Works, to specifically conduct Security Audits and Assessments of all Connecticut vocational technical schools and satellite facilities. Our team members are required to possess at least 10 years of security experience and are licensed and registered with the Connecticut State Police as required by law.

Jennings Smith Associates has conducted school safety audits and assessments, emergency response training, and in-service safety and security seminars to well over 100 school districts both regionally and nationwide. Through our affiliated website:www.americanschoolsafety.com, we have assisted over 1400 Schools, Colleges, and Law Enforcement agencies in developing comprehensive site based security plans. As an added value, provide a free on-line survey questionnaire directed to teachers, administration and staff in order to develop information relative to current issues involving school security and safety. Responses are anonymous and are aggregated to provide collective input. This is a valuable tool in focusing our collective efforts in addressing and mitigating deficiencies during the course of our school safety audits and assessments.

School Safety Audits and Assessments Team

William J. Smith, President, Senior Security Consultant

Distinguished career as a Security Consultant to Government, Industry and Private Sectors for the past thirty-five years. Provides Security Consulting Services to several Superintendents of Schools and directs Security Audit and Assessment Operations for the firm. Provides Assists districts in promulgating comprehensive School Emergency Response Plans and in-service training for Safety, Security and Emergency Management. Selected as Security Consultant on Call for the State of Connecticut, DPW, for all Connecticut Vocational Technical Schools and other Educational Facilities (2001-2004). Authored the Security Evaluation and Planning Guide which is used extensively by School Districts in the United States and Canada. Developed and Patented the CRK, a portable emergency response kit for schools and businesses. Managing Partner and owner of American School Safety.com, LLC, a website that provides resources and newsletters to over 15,000 registered members in the United States and Canada. Past Chairman of the Security Committee for the Hartford Chapter of the American Society for Industrial Security.

Victor H. Ferry, Ph.D. Senior Security Consultant

Victor H. Ferry, Ph.D. is a retired school administrator with extensive experience in emergency management and school safety. The former principal of a school within the shadow of three nuclear power plants for 24 years, Dr Ferry is the author of Localized School level Nuclear Emergency Guidelines and project consultant for the award winning “Guidelines for Safe Schools and Emergency Management.” Dr. Ferry completed a multi-Hazards Train the Trainer for Schools course at the Federal Emergency Management Institute and has been active in emergency management training and awareness throughout Connecticut and at the national level. While a school principal, he served for over twenty years on the Emergency Management Advisory Council and was the only school administrator designated as an Emergency Response Team member. In 1997, Dr Ferry was elected to the Representative Town Meeting and became Chairman of the Public Protection and Safety Committee and also served on the Education Committee. Dr. Ferry has served on the Board of Selectmen and represented this Board on matters pertaining to emergency management. On several occasions subsequent to his retirement, Dr. Ferry has consulted with school administrators regarding matters pertaining to communications, facilities use, and evacuation planning and safety/emergency management. He has conducted presentations on Safety Management and Emergency Preparedness for over 40 school districts and to various chapters of the American Society of Safety Engineers. In 2003 He completed the Train the Trainer, Community Response Team Training Course sponsored by the Office of Emergency Management (OEM), Community Emergency Response Teams, National Emergency Training Center, Emmetsburg, Maryland. Dr. Ferry is under contract with the firm as a Senior Security Consultant on Statewide Educational sector projects and is responsible for in-service training sessions and seminars. His numerous awards and honors include; Paul Harris Fellow (Rotary), 2001 State Service Award, Connecticut BBB Excellence in Community Service convention of the American Society of Safety Engineers, Orlando, Florida. “Safety Management and Emergency response in America’s Schools” 1999 Connecticut State Better Business Bureau Award (Excellence in Community Service) to the Millstone Information & Science Center for the compilation of, and project consultant for the Waterford Guidelines for Safe Schools and Emergency Management. In1989 Selected as Distinguished Alumni of Eastern Connecticut State University.1984 Selected as the first National Distinguished Principal from Connecticut by the National Association of Elementary School Principals and the U.S. Department of Education.

Ralph A. DiFonzo, Jr., Security Consultant

A nationally known expert in Crisis Management, Hostage Survival and School/Workplace Violence, retired Special Agent of the FBI, Ralph DiFonzo, has been featured on numerous television and radio programs for his extensive knowledge in these areas. Relying upon 30 years’ experience investigating violent crime cases throughout the United States and internationally, Ralph initiated and supervised the Connecticut Violent Crimes Fugitive Task Force. Previous assignments included Los Angeles, California and Salt Lake City, Utah. In addition to his investigative and security consulting skills, Ralph was and remains involved in Police and School Resource Officer training as a Certified POST instructor. Guest Speaker as subject expert to organizations which include The American Association of Industrial Management; The Connecticut Association of Schools and the Archdiocese of Hartford, Catholic School District. Developed a School Resource Officers’ (SRO) course which addresses the police officer as an educator, a crisis negotiator and his law enforcement role on campus pertaining to Crisis Management and Crisis Response Plans.

Bo Mitchell – Senior Security Consultant


Richard ‘Bo’ Mitchell was Police Commissioner of Wilton, CT for 16 years. He retired in February 2001 and has worked with our firm since 2006 to assist our Corporate and Educational sector clients in the development and implementation of Facility Emergency Action Plans, OSHA Standards Compliance, and Business Continuity Programs. He provides Workplace Violence Training seminars as well as situational response and infrastructure testing for our client’s senior management and employees. Bo has earned certifications in homeland security and organizational safety and security. He is court qualified and has testified as an expert in landmark court cases nationally. He is a Certified Business Continuity Professional, a Certified Emergency Manager and is American Board Certified in Homeland Security Level 5.

Manfred “Manny” Brideau – Security Consultant

Retired from the Connecticut State Police at the rank of Major with 32 years of law enforcement experience. During his service, was assigned to the Major Crime Unit, The Organized Crime Taskforce, Narcotics Taskforce, and had a major role in the formation of the Auto Theft Taskforce. Much of his duties were to insure the safety and security of undercover officers and their families, as well as to maintain the confidentiality of lengthily and sensitive investigations. During his career, he was directly in charge of all the covert investigative units within the State Police and work closely with both Federal and Local Law Enforcement Agencies. As Lieutenant and Captain assigned to the Western and Central Districts of the State Police, he was in charge of the security for several Presidential visits to Connecticut involving then President George H. Bush and President Bill Clinton. He also supervised security for the visit of Vice President Al Gore, as well as several visits by then First Lady, Barbara Bush.

During his career, one of his responsibilities was to oversee the operations of the Facility Manager, who was responsibility for all buildings under the control of the Department of Public Safety. While serving in this position, he undertook a comprehensive review of all D.P.S. building to insure that they were in compliance with State and Federal laws and to recommend necessary upgrades.

Manny holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Law Enforcement Administration from the University of New Haven and is a graduate of the FBI’s National Academy. He also has attended numerous other law enforcement related classes and schools. Manny is also a Veteran of the United States Marine Corps having served in Viet Nam.

Call 1-866-629-3757 for expert, discreet security consulting services in CT and across the US.

  • Jennings Smith Associates Professional Certifications

    • Professional Certified Investigator (PCI), ASIS International
    • Certified Protection Professional (CPP), ASIS International
    • Physical Security Professional (PSP), ASIS International
    • Certified Homeland Security Level 5 (CHS-V), American Board for Certification in Homeland Security
    • Certified Business Continuity Professional (CBCP), Disaster Recovery Institute International
    • Certified Healthcare Safety Professional (CHSP), Board of Certified Hazard Control Management
    • Certified Healthcare Emergency Professional (CHEP), Board of Certified Hazard Control Management
    • Certified Safety & Health Manager (CSHM), Institute for Safety and Health Management
    • Certified Hazard Control Manager (CHCM), Board of Certified Hazard Control Management
    • Certified Forensic Consultant (CFC), American College of Forensic Examiners International

    Certifications Continued


    Cyber Forensic Investigations

    JSA's cybersecurity experts are ready to assist you with a complete array of cybercrime protection, data recovery, and evidence collection services. Cyber forensic Investigations include: unauthorized data access; PII (personal identifiable information) exposure; IP (intellectual property/proprietary information) theft; employee social media/email/messaging abuse; ransomware data corruption; and more.

    Cyber Forensics Continued

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