Where trespassers do gain entry to school premises, they can cause significant damage, both to the premises themselves, and to the school's ability to operate remotely (for example, where electricity supplies or telephone lines are cut).
Removing trespassers from school property will become increasingly difficult and delayed as more measures are put in place to contain the spread of coronavirus. Police and local authorities are unlikely to have resources available to remove trespassers, even where they are committing criminal acts. Civil claims by schools to remove trespassers are likely to face more obstacles and to take longer to resolve. For example, witnesses, barristers and enforcement agents may not be available to assist, and court hearings may be delayed to account for reduced staff numbers. This will delay schools' ability to remove trespassers promptly and to reduce damage done.
Given these difficulties, schools should review their security arrangements and should take steps now to secure their premises against trespassers.