MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — Mobile County Public Schools incorporating first of its kind technology into one of its schools to help keep your children safer. The system alerts students, staff, and law enforcement in the case of an emergency.
The new system is inside Davidson High School and outside as well. It turns colors, uses digital signage, and an intercom, to make everyone aware when an emergency situation is happening. The system is called the Technology Integrated Security System (TISS).
MCPSS Telecommunications Manager Tracye Mathis said, “Gunshot detection which means that if anybody was to come into this school and fire a gun off the system automatically is recognizes that gunfire and will set off the alerts automatically without any human intervention.”
When an emergency happens, like a lockdown, or a fire, it flashes a color like blue for a tornado. It also has a digital sign and an intercom alerting everyone, and it sends notifications to computers as well as alerting law enforcement and first responders when needed.
MCPSS Director of Security Andy Gatewood said, “All the things that we’ve done before have somewhat operated seperately and this is a tool that will allow all of those things to operate together and take some of the human element out of it because we all know when things happen, sometimes it’s hard to remember everything that we need to do, so this will allow all those things to happen, or many of them to happen simultaneously.”
The system is engineered and built through a collaboration between MCPSS and the City of Mobile. The district is getting some help paying for the new system. The City got a $400,000 grant, and MCPSS pitched in $130,000.
Mobile County Board of School Commissioners President Don Stringfellow said, “I’ve worked in this system and with people for over 43 years as a teacher and an administrator and I have never, ever seen anything that compares to this in terms of security.”
The school district says the current system is a pilot program right now, but hopes to add the new technology to more of its schools. Students and staff have already been trained on the system. MCPSS is the first school system in Alabama to be certified by the ALICE Training Institute for implementing safety strategies that go beyond the conventional lockdown.