What happens when school staff dials 911? 

An operator goes through a line of questioning to dispatch first responders to the correct location with the most accurate information. But as U.S. schools have witnessed in Uvalde and Parkland, sometimes it’s not the first responders who are first to act. Many times the first people to respond are the school staff themselves. 

Schools across the U.S. face various types of emergencies, including

  • Extreme weather events,
  • Threats and violence, and
  • Medical emergencies.

When it comes to school safety procedures, rapid response times are essential. With the right protocols in place, swift action can help to minimize the severity of an incident and save lives. Most districts use a combination of safety measures to create a powerful approach to emergencies and threats. Unfortunately, traditional emergency response systems like

  • wall-mounted panic buttons
  • phone-based safety apps
  • Walkie talkies

can’t always provide the quick response time needed in a school emergency. One of the most important aspects of school safety is rapid response. In times of crisis, seconds make all the difference, and a rapid response system is the key to saving lives.

How rapid response to school emergencies saves lives

Rapid response times don’t happen by chance. With careful planning and preparation, districts can implement well-designed protocols to make sure faster response times happen for every kind of emergency. Schools can foster better safety responsiveness by communicating with all staff and students on what to do in the event of an emergency. This planning should include 

  • clear, reliable communication channels, 
  • established roles and responsibilities, and 
  • ongoing training and drills. 

By emphasizing the importance of rapid response times, schools can increase the likelihood of a successful outcome in an emergency.

A fast response time means the difference between life and death for students and staff. Not only that, rapid response times are crucial in containing potentially violent situations. When law enforcement arrives quickly, they can prevent further escalation of hostile situations and mitigate harm to others.

The average response time to a 911 call varies due to 

  • location, 
  • situation’s severity, and 
  • available local resources.

Emergency services aim to respond to 911 calls within 6 minutes or less. While this is a remarkable average, the window for life-saving measures needs to be even smaller.

According to RapidSOS, an emergency response platform that supports first responders, “For every minute delay in primary response for certain life-threatening medical emergencies, there is a measurable effect on mortality. The research is conclusive, especially for the first 5 minutes in the response interval, where rapid intervention makes the greatest difference.” In other words, what happens in those first five minutes may be the difference between life and death.

Incident Response Systems Save Lives With The Push Of A Button

Innovative wearable panic buttons, such as the CENTEGIX CrisisAlert™ system, instantly connect users with first responders and support teams, providing the rapid assistance needed to save lives.

In Brantley County Schools, when a teacher suffered a heart attack during class time, the response time from emergency services was 11 minutes. However, the CrisisAlert wearable panic button sent immediate alerts to onsite school responders. Within three minutes of the incident, respondents administered CPR and used the automated external defibrillator. This rapid response time helped save the teacher’s life, highlighting the importance of a trusted emergency response system.

The location of a school and the response times can have a severe impact not only on the well-being of students in emergencies but also on the emotional state of faculty members. Across the country, in Yakima Public Schools in Washington state, CrisisAlert triggered another immediate response that saved a staff member. In January 2023, Yakima School trained its faculty members to use the CrisisAlert system one day before a school counselor had a heart attack. Unable to reach for the phone to call 911, this counselor pressed the badge three times, summoning help from the Assistant Principal. Without the CENTEGIX wearable panic button, the counselor would not have been able to get help and would not have survived.

But it’s not just staff medical emergencies where quick response times matter. In a testimonial by an elementary school principal, CrisisAlert helped save a choking student’s life within 3 minutes. When the building principal received the alert for help, she, her school nurse, and SRO knew who to help and where to go. These are just a few of the countless stories of how the CrisisAlert system helps schools in emergencies.

CENTEGIX CrisisAlert offers rapid response times that are unmatched by other emergency response systems. Whether it’s a medical emergency or a safety threat, the CrisisAlert system can help its users quickly connect with first responders and support teams, saving lives and helping badge wearers feel safer and more supported.

School safety means more than just securing buildings and grounds; it’s also about creating a feeling of security for faculty members and students. The CENTEGIX CrisisAlert system plays a significant role in meeting these objectives. Thanks to the rapid response it provides, this system helps protect schools from unexpected emergencies, delivers peace of mind to educators and students, and ultimately ensures the safety of everyone on campus.

Every school deserves the assurance that help is always nearby with the press of a button. Every school deserves a safe, secure, and peaceful learning environment. Every school deserves CENTEGIX CrisisAlert. Book a demo now.