Safe Skies: Essential Safety Measures for Drones in Schools

She Maps Team
She Maps Team
27 Mar 2024
drone incursion with she maps 1

Drones are offering students hands-on experiences and fostering creativity. However, ensuring safe drone usage within school settings is paramount. Explore the essential safety measures that should be implemented when integrating drones into educational environments.

Professional development for teachers

Prioritise professional development for teachers. If teachers have a complete understanding of the technology, including the drones, control devices (tablets and/or laptops), safety regulations, and curriculum links. It will build a strong and confident drone program that ensures that educators teaching with drones have a solid understanding of safety protocols and operational guidelines.  They can troubleshoot on the fly and are able to plan programs with strong ties to the curriculum and student learning.

Teachers do not need a Remote Pilot Licence (RePL) to run drone programs within an educational institution.  It is all explained here 

Remote Pilot License (RePL) – Do I need this certification to fly drones?

No-fly zones and restricted areas

 Can I fly my drone indoors at school? When flying indoors, designing safety zones and flight zones sets defined boundaries for flying in a more confined space. 

When planning ourdoors flights clearly define no-fly zones and restricted areas within and around the school premises paying particular attention to distances between drones and the general school community and rules around flying drones overhead. This prevents drones from entering sensitive or potentially hazardous locations, such as sports fields during events or areas with high foot traffic.  

Pre-flight Safety Checklists

Instill the habit of conducting pre-flight checklists. Students should learn the importance of inspecting drones, no matter whether they are flying microdrones or sub 2kg. They need to check for any damage, ensure batteries are adequately charged, and verify that all components are functioning correctly before takeoff. Understand where they are flying and whether all safety regulations have been considered.

Emergency Protocols

Develop clear emergency protocols to handle unexpected situations. Teachers and students should know how to respond to equipment malfunctions, loss of control, or any other unforeseen circumstances, ensuring a swift and coordinated response.  When in doubt, LAND, is a great place to start.

Identify effective classroom management strategies to manage emergency situations and have a comprehensive risk assessment that covers all instances when things don’t quite go according to plan.

Privacy Awareness

Emphasise the importance of respecting privacy. Establish rules regarding the recording or photographing of individuals without their consent and ensure that drones are used responsibly to maintain a secure and respectful environment.  Even when flying indoors, if a camera is operating, all participants must be aware of privacy rules and should establish proper protocols when using them.

Integrating drones into school curriculums opens up a world of educational possibilities, but safety must be the top priority. By instilling proper training, adhering to safety protocols, and fostering a culture of responsibility, schools can create a secure environment for exploring the endless potential of drone technology in education.

For more information on drones in schools in Australia please visit Drones at School where you can find more details on flying drones.

About She Maps.

She Maps is Australia’s leading expert in drone and geospatial education. 

She Maps assist schools with the purchasing of drones, school-industry created drone and geospatial teaching resources and highly supportive teacher professional development.

You’re in Safe Hands!
She Maps is a CASA approved commercial operator to fly microdrones indoors with students and teachers. CASA holds commercial operators, to a higher standard than recreational users and educators. This means that She Maps has been assessed by CASA as having rigorous training and risk mitigation procedures in place.

Ready to buy drones for your school? We are an authorised DJI reseller in Australia

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