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How Drones Can Contribute to the Management of Schools?

Estimated reading time: 10 minutes

Drones are increasingly being adopted for use in schools and on school campuses. They provide new opportunities for school administrators and staff to enhance security, maintenance, and learning.

In this article, we will provide you an insight into how drones can contribute to the management of schools. For this, we will compare the benefits, features, and other important aspects of Drones.

Also, we will know how the efficiency of drones can be improved by integrating them with programs like school ERP.

Using a Drone in school helps in better surveillance & monitoring of school premises. It also helps to quickly respond to emergencies to avoid any mishappening.

Students making drones.

What Are the Key Takeaways on Drone Usage in Schools?

Some main points covered in this article include:

  • Drones provide new aerial vantage points for improved school security and emergency response. Video feeds and thermal scans prevent blind spots.
  • Facility and infrastructure inspections by drones enhance maintenance efficiency compared to difficult manual methods.
  • Drone integration into academic programs gives students valuable exposure to cutting-edge technologies and career skills.
  • For proper management, schools must follow FAA regulations, adopt thorough policies, train staff pilots, and implement cybersecurity measures.
  • Specialized school ERP software securely integrates drone data inputs and analysis for optimized utilization across school operations.

Benefits of Using Drones for School Management:

There are plenty of benefits that we can link to the use of a drone for the management of a school. Out of them, we have mentioned some of the top one below for you:

Enhanced Surveillance and Security:

One of the top priorities for school administrators is ensuring student and staff safety. Drones equipped with cameras and sensors can supplement existing security systems and provide improved monitoring of school grounds.

Perimeter Monitoring:

Schools have large campuses and perimeter fencing to secure. Drones can be programmed to automatically patrol and monitor the school’s physical boundaries, detecting any breaches or suspicious activities. Real-time drone footage can alert security personnel of any potential threats.

Building Surveillance:

Drone cameras allow school security teams to quickly scan school buildings, entry and exit points, and areas like locker bays where incidents can occur outside normal patrols.

Thermal sensor drones can identify heat signatures, enhancing after-hours monitoring.

Emergency Response:

In the event of emergencies like fires or active shooter incidents, first responders can deploy drones to instantly get eyes on the situation for better-informed response.

Drones can help locate missing or injured people, provide intel on hostage situations, and investigate hazards like gas leaks.

Traffic and Crowd Control:

The sudden influx and exit of students and parents during pickup and drop-offs can create traffic issues. Drone observation can identify problem areas and improve traffic flow.

Drones also provide an aerial vantage point during school events to spot crowd bottlenecks, medical emergencies, or other issues.

Drone flying durinf school event

Expanded Law Enforcement:

School resource officers can use drones to expand their patrols and deter criminal activities like trespassing, vandalism, and theft.

Drone footage serves as evidence for investigations and arrests, as well as for assessing compliance with stay-away orders.

Efficient Maintenance & Facilities Management:

School campuses comprise many buildings and infrastructure like sports fields, parking lots, and utilities that require ongoing maintenance. Drones offer new efficiencies for facilities management.

Roof & Building Inspections:

Roof damage or leaks can go undetected, leading to interior damage and mold growth. Drones provide close-up and comprehensive views of roof surfaces to spot damage not visible from the ground.

Thermal drones can quickly scan for areas of poor insulation, moisture accumulation, and HVAC issues.

Drone inspecting school building.

Monitoring Construction & Renovations:

Major construction and renovation projects can be monitored more safely and effectively using drones. Aerial footage provides progress oversight and verifies contractor work without disrupting the job site.

Drones also document project stages and completion without relying on scaffolding or lifts.

Drainage & Grounds Evaluation:

School grounds need proper drainage and grading to avoid flooding or erosion issues. Small drone quadcopters can survey large areas rapidly to map topography, detect drainage problems, and inspect fields after heavy rains.

Drones also inspect the health of vegetation and find areas in need of landscaping improvements.

Solar Panel Audits:

For schools with solar power installations, drones equipped with imaging sensors can scan arrays to detect damage, debris accumulation, and substandard connections requiring repair.

Drone inspections optimize energy production from the solar investment.

Enhanced Learning Opportunities:

Drones have exciting potential as an instructional tool to give students hands-on experience with emerging technologies. Under proper supervision, drones can be integrated into many academic subjects.

STEM Programs:

The science, technology, engineering, and math skills involved in building, operating, and applying drones align with many STEM learning objectives.

Students get to study principles of flight, electronics, programming, aerial mapping and problem-solving. Drone projects can be worked into physics, robotics, engineering, and other tech courses.

Media Production:

Student broadcast programs, films, and other media projects gain professional production value by incorporating drone cameras for establishing shots, high angle perspectives, tracking shots and intricate maneuvers. Youth get exposed to drone videography skills.

Environmental Science:

Environmental science and earth sciences classes can use drones equipped with sampling tools to collect air or water samples for site analysis.

Infrared cameras provide aerial thermal mapping of landscapes and ecosystems. Drones allow students to safely simulate satellite research methods.

Geography & Archaeology:

Mapping and modeling software allows drone data to be converted into 3D renderings and digital surface models. Students can reconstruct terrain, architecture, and objects for compelling visualizations of geography, archaeology and historical structures.

How to Use Drones to Manage Schools Effectively and Safely?

While drones offer many benefits, schools should implement their use properly by following FAA regulations and best practices. Here are key considerations:

  • Acquire the proper permissions and licenses from the FAA and local authorities for school drone operations.
  • Adopt a detailed drone policy covering approved uses, privacy protections, flight areas, pilot requirements and maintenance procedures.
  • Train and certify school personnel as small UAS pilots under FAA rules to manage day-to-day drone operations.
  • Educate students and parents on drone capabilities, safety, ethics, and privacy concerns.
  • Establish drone flight areas away from crowds and property overflight during takeoffs and landings.
  • Equip drones with safety features like propeller guards, collision avoidance and automated return-to-home technology.
  • Implement cybersecurity measures like encryption to protect surveillance footage and prevent signal hacking.

By integrating drones into school functions thoughtfully, administrators can capitalize on drone benefits while keeping risks in check.

How School ERP Software Can Complement Drone Usage?

To fully realize the potential of drones in schools, the aerial data they gather needs to interface with school information systems. Robust enterprise resource planning (ERP) software provides this vital integration capability.

Central Data Repository:

A good school management system software offers you a centralized database to store, manage, and analyze data inputs from varied sources, including drone sensor, feeds, surveillance footage, inspection reports and pilot logs. Data can be categorized by time, location or other attributes.

Automated Work Order Generation:

Drone inspections that reveal facility damage, safety hazards or maintenance needs can trigger automated work orders within the ERP system to initiate repairs per school protocols. Reports, reminders and multistep workflows ensure completion.

Resource Optimization:

ERP algorithms analyze drone inputs like roof thermal scans along with historical maintenance data to optimize HVAC usage.

Field condition assessments can determine irrigation, fertilization and mowing needs. Patrol patterns can be adjusted based on emerging security threats.

Record keeping & Compliance Reporting:

Drone flight activity logged by school ERP provides auditable documentation required for regulatory compliance. ERP systems create and store required maintenance reports, inspection certificates and contractor evaluations associated with drone operations.

Enhanced Data Visualization:

ERP software integrates drone aerial photos, infrared scans and 3D renderings into interactive site maps, building information models and other visual outputs that enhance analysis and presentation capabilities.

Risk Mitigation:

Access controls, user permissions and change logs within advanced ERP platforms provide security and oversight of drone data usage. ERP backup ensures drone insights remain available. Encryption protects sensitive surveillance footage.

By serving as the central management hub for school drone programs, specialized ERP systems allow the data drones gather to be fully leveraged for optimizing safety, maintenance, compliance and daily operations.

How to Pick the Right Drone for School Management?

When selecting drones for school use, there are many things that you should consider. These are:

  • Flight time: Look for models that can stay airborne for 15–30 minutes per battery charge minimum. Spare batteries can extend flight time.
  • Camera/sensor features: Assess camera resolution and zoom capabilities based on monitoring needs. Look for models compatible with swappable payload modules for future upgrades.
  • Range: Maximum controllable range of 1 mile (1.61 km) or more provides ample coverage for most campuses. Urban environments may need lower range models.
  • Size: Smaller quadcopters under 2 lbs offer safe confined space flight. Larger drones can carry more payload but require more space for launch/landing.
  • Durability: Commercial drones feature weather resistance and carbon fiber or hardened plastic bodies to handle minor crashes. Propeller guards are essential.
  • Safety features: Auto return-to-home, geofencing, collision avoidance, ID beacons, and integrated first-person view headsets add essential redundancies.
  • Autonomy: Programmable flight plans, tracking modes, and automation features allow drones to scan areas systematically with minimal pilot input needed.
DJI Mavic Air 2S, Photo in the dark showing the drone's LED lighting.

The DJI Air 2S is one of the best drones available. Here is the review.

What Are the Best Practices for Maintenance of School Drones?

To sustain peak performance and safety, there are various things take you should take care of regarding school drones:

  • Thorough pre-flight inspections of structures, motors, batteries, connections, and sensors.
  • Post-flight logging of battery usage, abnormal performance, or damage issues.
  • Periodic firmware and software updates, sensor calibration, and RF component tuning per manufacturer guidelines.
  • Timely replacement of high wear parts like batteries, propellers, and gimbal assemblies based on usage data.
  • Proper battery charging, storage, and disposal protocols to prevent swelling and explosions.
  • Comprehensive maintenance logs on repairs, part replacements, and safety incidents for each aircraft.
  • Sufficient spare parts inventories and repair resources to minimize aircraft downtime.


Drones are an increasingly valuable tool for school administrators seeking improved oversight of security, facilities management, construction projects and day-to-day operations. Properly implemented, drones provide vital new data inputs and analysis without introducing undue risks.

School ERP systems allow drone insights to be organized, automated and visualized in ways that maximize their benefits. By considered adoption of drone technology combined with advanced information management, schools gain new efficiencies to better serve their core mission – teaching students.

What kind of drones are best suited for schools?

Small quadcopter drones under 5 pounds (2.27 kg) are the most practical for school use. They offer agility in confined areas and use propeller guards for safety. Larger octocopter drones provide heavier lift capacity for larger cameras and sensors.

What are the limitations on drone usage?

Drones cannot be flown over groups of people or moving vehicles. Night flights require special waivers. Most school drones will be confined to campus boundaries and below 400 feet altitude. Pilots must maintain visual line of sight.

What expertise is needed to operate school drones?

School personnel must obtain FAA Remote Pilot certification by passing an aeronautical exam.

Some experience via training programs is recommended. Most school drones are fairly easy to learn to fly, even without aviation backgrounds.

What risks do school drones pose?

Potential risks include collisions, flyaways if connections are lost, falling debris if crashes occur, and privacy/data security. Proper operator training, geofencing around stay-away zones, and encryption mitigate these risks.

How are school drones powered and controlled?

Most smaller drones run on rechargeable lithium polymer batteries providing 15–30 minutes of flight time. Controls use 2.4 GHz radio communication from a handheld transmitter. New inductive charging pads allow automated launching and landing.

How weatherproof are school drones?

Commercial drones feature weather resistant casings and motors. However, most drones cannot safely operate in heavy winds or precipitation and still require indoor storage. New de-icing products help expand winter usability.

How are school drones cybersecured?

Cyber risks include signal hijacking or spoofing and data theft. Encrypted control links and data communications, GPS signal authentication, hardened data storage, and strict access controls protect drone systems from intrusion.


Article Name
How Drones Can Contribute to the Management of Schools?
In this article, we will provide you an insight into how drones can contribute to the management of schools. For this, we will compare the benefits, features, and other important aspects of Drones.
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Remoteflyer Private Lmited
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