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Wisconsin High School Tests Panic Pendants for Teacher Safety

A high school in Wisconsin has issued panic button pendants to its teachers that enable them to summon emergency help with the push of a button. Shorewood High School recently implemented the Help Alert Emergency Call Solution, a wireless "staff duress system" from RF Technologies, as a beta program.

When a teacher needs assistance, he or she presses a button on a pendant that can be worn on a necklace, wristband, or belt clip or concealed in a pocket. A silent signal is transmitted to a central in-house computer, that runs an application that can forward the teacher's name and location to pagers, walkie-talkies, wireless phones, or cell phones. The device can be carried to areas on campus where there is no security coverage.

The district said in a statement that it hasn't experienced serious security incidents. "In a crisis or medical emergency, response time is critical. Help Alert will allow us to minimize the time needed to respond to such an event and take the necessary action rapidly to ensure the safety of our students," said Timothy Kenney, safety administrator for the Shorewood School District. "Since student safety is the number one priority, this is why we chose to have this system installed."

The vendor has outfitted three of the high school's buildings with the wireless Help Alert solution.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a former senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning.