Missouri Gov. Mike Parson on Wednesday announced that public and charter schools across the state can soon sign up for access to a new app that will allow teachers to alert emergency responders and other school staff during emergencies.
The app, which is being provided free of charge to Missouri schools, is being developed through a contract between the Missouri Department of Public Safety and Raptor Technologies, a Houston company that specializes in school safety and emergency management software. The app will interface directly with 911 systems, according to the governor’s office.
“We want all students across Missouri to have the opportunity to learn in safe and secure schools,” Parson said in a press release. “That’s why our administration included funding for this school safety app. It puts a simple to use silent alerting app into the hands of teachers and school personnel, so they can get word out of an intruder or other emergency. We will continue to advance school safety and the ability to quickly respond to threats to Missouri’s students and educators.”
The app’s launch follows a February shooting at a school in St. Louis that prompted Parson to authorize $20 million for school safety grants.
Using existing emergency alert technology already used by Missouri schools, the app “expedites and streamlines emergency response” via silent alerts, according to the press release.
“The silent alert works directly with 911 to provide critical information, such as location-based information and school campus maps, with first responders, law enforcement, and campus personnel — within seconds,” the release reads. “Additionally, districts are able to schedule and manage their ongoing safety drills using the Raptor software.”
Missouri plans to test the new app at a handful of schools before switching on the app statewide.