CENTEGIX | EDUCATION
TENNESSEE SCHOOL SAFETY STANDARDS
FUNDING OVERVIEW AND REQUIREMENTS
TENNESSEE PASSES ALYSSA’S LAW
Tennessee legislators recently passed Alyssa’s Law, a law that encourages schools to equip all classrooms with panic buttons. Now it heads to Governor Bill Lee’s desk, where he is expected to sign it. Learn more about the story here.
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TENNESSEE SCHOOL SAFETY SOLUTIONS
The Tennessee government understands the need to make school safety a state priority. Tennessee school alert systems and other tools are designed to protect students and staff. Learn more about these solutions and how they meet Tennessee school safety standards below. Then connect with a CENTEGIX specialist to learn more about the CrisisAlert wearable solution and how it can help keep your staff and students safe.
School Safety Toolkit
In June 2022, Gov. Bill Lee signed an executive order to create a School Safety Toolkit to:
- Direct state agencies to help school districts implement existing school safety laws, including regular security audits.
- Provide parents with information on how to advocate for school safety, report suspicious behavior, access mental health resources, and help ensure school building security.
The safety kit includes the free SafeTN app, so threats and safety concerns at schools can be reported anonymously. All tips and concerns are sent to law enforcement.
The Tennessee Mental Health Crisis Hotline is available 24/7 and 365 days a year. The number is (855) CRISIS-1.
The School Safety Toolkit for Tennessee Families includes signs that someone could cause harm at school:
- social withdrawal
- excessive feelings of isolation and being alone
- excessive feelings of rejection
- being a victim of violence
- feelings of being persecuted
- low school interest and poor academic performance
- uncontrolled anger
- patterns of impulsive and chronic hitting, intimidating, and bullying behaviors
- history of discipline problems
- history of violent and aggressive behavior
- intolerance for differences and prejudicial attitudes
- use of drugs and alcohol
- affiliation with gangs
- serious threats of violence
If a student displays some of these signs, it doesn’t necessarily mean the child will commit acts of violence. However, they can suggest that the student needs help.
The Behavior Health Safety Net for Children provides outpatient mental health services for ages three to seven. There are no limits on family income for eligibility.
In addition, Mental Health 101 is an early intervention program for middle and high school students across Tennessee. Mental health professionals visit more than 120 schools each year.
Learn more here.
Schools Against Violence in Education (SAVE) Act
When Tennessee passed the Schools Against Violence in Education (SAVE) Act, it provided a state-level team to help school districts develop and implement a comprehensive school safety planning strategy.
All school districts are required to work with parents and emergency response agencies to create emergency operations plans (EOPs) to be submitted to the Tennessee School Safety Center. EOPs should include:
- parent notification plan
- plan for relocating and releasing students
- designated primary and alternate evacuation routes
- planning for school-sponsored events, field trips, bus emergencies, and on-site and off-site command posts
Under the SAVE act, grant funds are available from the School Safety Center to help districts develop their plans.
Learn more about the act here.
Executive Order 97: ESSR Funds
Executive Order 97, which was signed by Gov. Lee, directs the Department of Education to request permission to use existing ESSER funds to conduct safety assessments that would identify the need for facility upgrades necessary to enhance building security and safety.
The order also directs the state education officials to identify regional staff that can be repurposed to focus on safety, mental health, and family and community engagement.
Learn more here.
Safe Schools Act
Tennessee school safety solutions include the Safe Schools Act, which makes funds available to limit violent and disruptive behavior. Public school districts can use those funds for
- facility security and planning
- school safety personnel
- violence prevention
- training and drills
- behavioral health
Up to $20 million was available to be dispersed to different schools in 2021 and 2022. The 2023 amount hasn’t been set.
Learn more about the Safe Schools Act grant here.
The School Safety Act of 2018
When The School Safety Act of 2018 was passed, it gave off-duty police officers the opportunity to work in state schools. The law also required participating law enforcement agencies to assess school safety and report back to the legislature.
Learn more about the bill here.
School Security Assessment
Additional Tennessee school safety standards will go into effect on July 1. The Tennessee School Safety Center will be tasked with developing and evaluating training materials related to safety issues, including
- violence prevention
Officials at the center will collect and analyze school safety data and make regular reports to the education committee of the Senate and the education administration committee of the House of Representatives.
Tennessee’s Department of Safety and Homeland Security and Department of Education are charged with developing school security assessments and training law enforcement and school administrators to identify and eliminate school security vulnerabilities.
Learn more about the assessment process here.
Tennessee Investment in Student Achievement Formula
The law that created the Tennessee School Safety Center also allows school districts to use funding from the Tennessee Investment in Student Achievement (TISA) Formula for programs geared toward student safety:
- violence prevention programs
- conflict resolution
- disruptive or assaultive behavior management
- improved school security
- school resource officers
- school safety officers
- peer mediation
- employee training
Learn more about the formula here.
House Bill 322 Amendment: Required Security Features
When it comes to Tennessee school safety solutions, keeping school doors locked to block access by unauthorized people is a simple step to protect students. According to a report, the State Fire Marshal’s Office identified 527 unlocked exterior doors during inspections of approximately 1,500 schools.
Gov. Lee introduced legislation requiring that all primary and secondary schools keep their exterior doors locked or risk losing escalating amounts of funding for each violation.
The proposed legislation would also require new security features included with all school buildings constructed or renovated after July 1.
Some school districts have invested in cameras and metal detectors, but it’s always important to focus on the fundamentals, such as developing a school climate of questioning individuals on campus who aren’t wearing visitor badges.
Learn more about the required features here.
Tennessee School Safety Specialist Program
The Tennessee School Safety Specialist Program provides ongoing training about best practices for school safety, security, prevention, and planning. The goal is to create a safe and supportive learning environment.
After training, School Safety Specialists:
- Coordinate with emergency responders, local medical facilities, community members, administrators, parents, and students to update emergency operations plans.
- Network with appropriate stakeholders to enhance school safety.
- Serve as resources on issues related to school discipline, safety, security, and bullying prevention.
- Provide professional development for district faculty and staff on school violence, crime prevention, bullying, and other issues.
Learn more about the program here.
CENTEGIX | EBOOK
Demonstrating Success in Education
CENTEGIX believes that school should be a place where students can learn and grow safely and with a sense of well-being. As the leader in discreet, wearable panic buttons, CENTEGIX contributes to school safety by providing instantaneous communication with first responders in the event of any threat to the health and safety of students and educators.
Learn how CrisisAlert has made a difference across the country in our ebook. Download your copy today →
HOW ARE YOUR RESOURCES BEING SPENT?
CENTEGIX protects over 4,000 schools across the country.
We can protect your school, too. CENTEGIX’s CrisisAlert™ platform is an incident response solution that protects students and staff members by empowering teachers and staff to call for help with a simple push of a button. The solution provides first responders with the most accurate location information, enabling them to respond faster in any situation.
Discover resources to fund new safety and security initiatives in your district with our funding guide.
HEAR FROM OUR EDUCATORS
"I witnessed a custodian slipping and falling in the front lobby, and she was needing immediate help to stop bleeding. I was able to hit the button and get the nurse's attention immediately. We did not have to use the ambulance because of the quick response. Your system is perfect for schools! Thanks!"
Private school teacher, Sarasota County, FL
"A student was having trouble breathing and her vision was beginning to black out. We don't have service in our building and it can be difficult to get ahold of the office staff, so having something to immediately alert them of emergency was incredibly helpful in a very scary situation."
Elementary school teacher, Clayton County Schools
"A child with special was writhing and screaming on the floor of the lunch room. I pushed the button and immediately the team was coming in the door. 10/10 would recommend because CrisisAlert worked for me in that crisis situation."
Elementary school teacher, Jay School Corp.
"A student was bothering another student and would not stop after several verbal warnings and attempt to separate the student from his target, and without any luck I triggered the alarm to come assist me with the situation. It has been very comforting to just push a button and help is on the way."
Middle school teacher, Coweta County Schools
"I had a student who was refusing to follow directions and became very defiant. This student was beginning to get aggressive. I used my badge to alert our campus security monitor to remove the student from the situation.It is a very useful tool when the response was as immediate as it was and the resolution was satisfactory. Students understood the urgency in the situation."
High school teacher, Clark County School District
"I was outside with my physical education class and I had a student become upset at another student in their group. They made a poor choice and then feared that they would get in trouble for that choice....when I could not get this student to [re]enter the building, I knew I needed to push my badge so administrators could find us and help me get him calm and into the building. It was great to know that the administrators would know I needed help and would be able to see our location since it was outside of the building in a random spot. As a PE teacher the badge gives me a sense of security that I can receive help with altercations or injuries quickly. In the past you had to send students running for help...this is a much better system!"
PE teacher, South Adams Schools
"A student was having a meltdown and jeopardizing the safety of himself and others. Instead of having to go to the wall phone and dial a number or call from my personal phone, the office was quickly alerted and called ME to find out what type of assistance I needed. I've only used it once, but I'm secure in the fact that it works so fast and response time in shortened."
Elementary school teacher, Cobb County Schools
"I had a student have a seizure in my classroom. I have used this several times, and the admins come check on me promptly."
High school teacher, Jay School Corp.
"I had a student who was inconsolable and crying very, very loudly. She was unable to regain composure and was disrupting the class and the classrooms around us. I believe that every teacher in every classroom should have access to this tool. It is a gamechanger for teachers."
Elementary school teacher, Olathe Public Schools
"2 students came into my classroom, ready to fight each other and without the centigix badge things would have escalated. It was quick and easy to use to resolve the conflict."
Middle school teacher, Douglas County Schools
CrisisAlert™ Provides Grant-Funded Safety Measures
CENTEGIX CrisisAlert is an emergency incident response system that features wearable panic buttons which generate accurate, usable data. The CrisisAlert school safety solution uses visual strobes, digital messages, and automated intercom announcements to inform everyone of a campus-wide incident and to instruct them on actions they should take. CrisisAlert meets the security infrastructure needs the Tennessee school safety grants aim to address.
CrisisAlert features an analytics dashboard that assists administrators as they make safety and security decisions. A data set is generated when a staff member uses their wearable badge to call for assistance. Administrators can better understand where and why, and under what conditions. These administrative decisions, enabled by CrisisAlert data, contribute to the “positive and safe climate” that the safety grants aim to foster.
The CrisisAlert school safety solution provides robust and uninterrupted communication between staff members, administrators, first responders, and students. Unlike other emergency incident response systems, CrisisAlert’s technology precludes adoption and connectivity challenges. CrisisAlert runs on a dedicated IoT network; it’s not susceptible to wi-fi or cellular connectivity interruptions. And because the CrisisAlert mobile panic button is worn along with an ID badge, 100% of staff members use it. This high adoption rate means that every staff member at every location on campus can call for help when they need it. CrisisAlert generates accurate location data for every alert, no matter where on campus. Therefore first responders know exactly where to go during an emergency. In many instances, this kind of rapid response can prevent tragedy.
These critical features of the CrisisAlert badge from CENTEGIX ensure an immediate response:
- Desktop takeover notifications for staff mean campus-wide alerts are never missed.
- Location accuracy enables rapid response.
- The system immediately connects the parties best prepared to handle the situation.
- Wifi and phone outages have no effect on the system.
- Wearable security badges are easily accessible, lightweight, and wearable.
CENTEGIX CrisisAlert can help school districts and LEAs enact these measures, making students and staff safer. The CrisisAlert school safety solution helps create a climate of safety by enabling staff members to call for help instantly, from anywhere on campus, in any type of emergency. Under these conditions, teachers can focus on student needs, and students can focus on learning.
CENTEGIX is the leader in incident response solutions. Our CrisisAlert platform is the fastest and easiest way for staff to call for help in any emergency, from the everyday to the extreme. CENTEGIX creates safer spaces by innovating technology to empower and protect people, and leaders nationwide trust our safety solutions to provide peace of mind. To learn more about CENTEGIX, visit www.centegix.com.
THE CRISISALERT ADVANTAGE: WHY WE ARE DIFFERENT
ONE BUTTON ACTIVATION
Wearable badge with a single button enables confident human action. Users are not required to download an app.
With the simple push of a button, alerts instantly reach administrators and responders.
TOTAL FACILITY COVERAGE
Our network secures every square foot of your property – there are no dead zones. Badges function everywhere.
AUDIO & VISUAL NOTIFICATION
Facility-wide alerts communicate emergency information using colored strobe lights, desktop alerts, and intercom integration.
Our innovative technology determines the location of the alert, down to an individual room.
EASE OF INSTALLATION
Solutions installed with no alterations to physical structures or electrical wiring are required.
CENTEGIX CrisisAlert vs Mobile Apps
CrisisAlert eliminates vulnerabilities related to app-only solutions and enables rapid incident response to every scenario.
CONTACT US TO LEARN MORE ABOUT PROTECTING YOUR SCHOOL
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CrisisAlert In Action
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Examining Emergency Response Solutions Post-Uvalde
IN A CRISIS, EVERY SECOND MATTERS.