Hillsborough County Public Schools will begin to add new state-of-the-art security systems into each school that will empower teachers and staff to call for help in an emergency.
"It empowers our faculty to be able to call lockdowns rather than having to waste valuable seconds to try to get help in certain situations," said Superintendent Jeff Eakins.
The new CENTEGIX CrisisAlert system will help to increase security on every campus. Each teacher and staff member will be issued an ID badge with a button. Whether it's a medical emergency or an active threat to campus, the teacher can press the button alerting the school to the issue.
Light beacons in hallways as well as messages over the sound system will be activated. School leaders also have an app on their phones that show the exact location of where the issue is occuring. These audio and visual cues will be everywhere on each campus including classrooms, hallways, the cafeteria, athletic fields or in the parking lot.
The new CENTEGIX CrisisAlert system will also ensure every student and staff member is notified of an emergency no matter where they are on campus, including classrooms, hallways, the cafeteria, athletic fields or in the parking lot.
"Something like this that everyone can be alerted so quickly is going to change the dynamic of how school works. Thinking about something happening, like a medical emergency or school shooting is traumatic for everyone. To know this is in place makes me feel 10 times safer," said student N'Dia Webb.
Our district continues to be a state and national leader when it comes to the safety of our students and staff. The new crisis notification systems will be installed in every school by the fall. The district was able to pay for the systems through a $7.6 million grant through the state's Safety and Security of School Buildings grant.