MEDINA COUNTY, Ohio (WJW) – A local school district is making a big investment to keep kids safe on campus.
With the push of a button, a new alert system will trigger lockdowns and prompt an emergency response from the Medina County Sheriff’s Office in just seconds.
Buckeye Local Schools Superintendent Jeff Harrison said the CENTEGIX CrisisAlert device is designed to improve response times during a school emergency.
Beginning next year, all staff members, nearly 150 total, will have the credit card-sized device as an added security measure to set off alerts.
“It immediately notifies help,” said Harrison. “Seconds are so important, and what this system allows us to do is, within a matter of fractions of seconds, help will be on the way.”
The district is the first in the county to use the wearable device, Harrison said.
CENTEGIX reports 50,000 crisis alerts were delivered last fall. The majority were related to student behavior issues like fighting or consist of medical emergencies.
“When that alert goes, the safety and security team on their cell phone gets a map of the district with an exact location of where the button was pushed,” said Harrison.
The system cost the district $24,000. Harrison said it will be paid by using general funds and grant money. Protecting students and staff, he said, is a priceless investment.
“When you’re in crisis, we don’t know how everybody’s going to react in those moments,” said Harrison. “Here we want to have a level of simplicity… just simply grab that badge. It’s around your neck on the lanyard, hit that button three or more times and help is on the way.”
The district campus is spread across 175 acres with 2,300 students enrolled.
Akron Public Schools is conducting a field trial of CrisisAlert from CENTEGIX at two schools.