S.A.F.E., the Safety Alerts for Education Foundation, announced that it is donating the Safety Alerts for Education emergency mobile alerts platform to all Massachusetts schools, for free and in perpetuity.
This is an identical system to the Massachusetts Alerts system, which has been used by the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) for emergency communications to the public since 2012. S.A.F.E may save lives in situations where a few extra seconds of warning can be the difference between life and death.
The S.A.F.E. Foundation is a non-profit 501c3 organization founded by the principals of Ping4 Inc., of Nashua, NH. Ping4 invented and developed the Massachusetts Alerts emergency communications technology that the S.A.F.E. Foundation uses.
This S.A.F.E. system is currently being implemented in New Hampshire Schools. This same system, developed by Ping4, has been effectively used at the Federal, State and County levels for the past 7 years, including during the Boston Marathon bomber manhunt and in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.
At the New Hampshire launch press conference Governor Sununu lauded “the opportunity that schools now have to create a first class, world class, security and communications system for their students.”
“The wellbeing of our students, and the safety of our schools, matter to all of us”, said Jim Bender, CEO of Ping4, “This issue of school safety goes well beyond making sure that our children make it home safely from school each day. It is also about creating a positive school environment which is more conducive to learning, and more conducive to teaching. We are excited to expand our New Hampshire S.A.F.E. initiative to Massachusetts.
S.A.F.E. enables schools to send geographically precise emergency alerts, anonymously, and in real-time, to nearly any smartphone in any school building or on any campus. A favorite of law enforcement agencies and first responders, S.A.F.E. provides real-time instructions to those inside school buildings to better protect themselves and get out of harm’s way quicker.
First responders outside can also receive valuable information in real-time from inside a building, even before they arrive on the scene, reducing response times and giving greater situational awareness of a shooter or other emergency.
“When we reviewed every after-action report of school shootings across the country communication was always an issue,” said Perry Plummer, Director of the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management for the state of NH. “How do we let the people know what they should do to protect themselves and how do we let parents know that their child is safe and where to pick them up.”
A free download for school students and staff on iOS or Android, S.A.F.E. provides an administrative alert dashboard for school administrators to send secure life-saving alerts. S.A.F.E. delivers 2-way rich media messages in real-time, with any combination of audio, video, pictures and text, which can be very helpful to police, school administrators, and first responders in assessing situations, saving lives, and solving crimes. S.A.F.E. is completely anonymous and collects no personal data from users of the app.
Parents of children in the school can preset “watched locations” on their own phone, so that they will receive all alerts sent to their children at school, as well as designated, safe child pick-up locations, regardless of where the parents are at the time. S.A.F.E. messages can originate either from the school administration itself, or from local law enforcement, or both. S.A.F.E. can be implemented locally within weeks.
Each school or school system can customize, manage and send out their own alerts via an easy to use web-based portal. S.A.F.E. can isolate a school building or campus on a map and only those in the designated areas will receive the alerts. S.A.F.E.’s ability to pinpoint locations with geographic accuracy is second to none.
Any school system in Massachusetts can opt-in to this system by signing up here.
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