Rising risks and shrinking budgets have long been challenges to student safety and adequate emergency management in schools from K-12 to higher ed.
Then came COVID-19.
Risks skyrocketed, priorities shifted, and you’ve been forced to cook up new ways to serve your school community.
There’s the challenge of keeping students and staff healthy, of course. At the same time, you’re challenged to keep students engaged, keep families informed and supported, and keep teachers from losing their minds.
To make all of the above possible, you’ve embraced new technologies and Zoom has entered our collective vocabulary. Next, you can further magnify remote learning, security and safety capabilities by integrating technologies you already own.
We invite you to consider the following solutions:
Integrate 3rd-party, legacy tech = increased automations, remote access
Those old security cameras, audio PA, phone system, fire alarms, PCs and more may have been built by different manufacturers, but they can still “talk” with one another.
When machines “talk” among themselves, they can also perform a wide range of new functions and replace manual tasks. Those automations translate into less manual work, less chance of human error or risk.
The cherry on top: Because you’re leveraging tools you already own, rollout is affordable, easy to customize and scale. No giant tech investment required.
>> More on integrating your existing technologies.
Include special needs audiences (e.g. blind, deaf/hard-of-hearing, non-English speakers)
Imagine a call-to-action has been issued that impacts you as a student, staff or parent, but you’ve missed it altogether because you can’t see, hear or understand it for some reason. Inconvenient, right?
Now imagine that was a timely alert for an emergency, and you have moments to respond to avoid harm. That’s terrifying, as we’ve learned from deaf students.
It’s why we advocate layering your communications in various formats and vehicles, so no intended recipient ever falls through the cracks.
>> More on reaching deaf/blind students.
Centralize logins and access
If you’re logging in and out of platforms to monitor school security, notify appropriate staff, compose and send mass alerts, know that all this juggling isn’t necessary.
One massive bonus of technology integrations is the ability to reduce manual steps dramatically — like accessing a wide menu of functions from a central dashboard.
Take Virtual Campus, for instance: This security hub pulls data from various technologies and displays virtual alerts to abnormal activity. As a result, school leaders can view potential threats and suspicious activities across their entire campus at once, and deploy instant alerts to select audiences. That means you can respond to crises in seconds with a lot more actionable data to prevent harm.
>> More on Visual Campus (included for free with various modules of the Layered Solutions interface).
Not sure how all this looks in action? We invite you to read the following case studies:
- Making Security Inclusive: Reaching Deaf, Blind Students
American School for the Deaf (ASD) and Colorado School for the Deaf and the Blind (CSDB)
- Integrating Disparate Technologies for Better, Faster Emergency Response
Kingsway Regional and South Harrison Township Elementary School District
Adapting to the new normal doesn’t have to bankrupt your budget. You can accelerate your recovery by making the most of technologies sitting in your facilities today.