CENTEGIX | EDUCATION
VIRGINIA SCHOOL SAFETY STANDARDS
FUNDING OVERVIEW AND REQUIREMENTS
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VIRGINIA IS INVESTING TO MAKE SCHOOLS SAFER
Virginia lawmakers, like others across the US, responded to the 2012 mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary by passing several laws and policies focused on making schools safer. In 2023, Virginia schools will receive grant money made possible by such legislation. Many Virginia local educational agencies (LEAs) were awarded substantial federal funding for creating robust school safety plans. The grants will fund school safety solutions that include new infrastructure and technology, staff training, mental health resources, inclusion efforts, and more.
School Security Equipment Grants Program:
In late 2022, the Virginia Department of Education announced $12 million in state School Security Equipment Grants to provide school safety solutions that protect students, faculty, and visitors in Virginia public schools. The grants will provide funding to 431 schools in 90 school divisions. The award criteria prioritize schools most in need of modern security equipment, with high numbers of offenses, with needs identified by a school security audit, and in divisions least able to afford security upgrades.
The Virginia General Assembly established the School Security Equipment Grants program in 2013, in the aftermath of the 2012 mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut. In 2020, the General Assembly doubled the total annual appropriation for the program from $6 million to $12 million. The legislature also increased the maximum award per school division from $100,000 to $250,000.
Security equipment that qualifies for funding under the School Security Equipment Grants Program includes:
- intercom systems and supporting technology
- security film, surveillance equipment, and cameras
- security door hardware and classroom door locks
- electronic access control systems
- visitor badging systems
- security scanning equipment
- two-way radios
- mass notification telephone systems equipment
- uninterrupted power supply for emergency systems back up
- security alarm
- security lighting systems
- security panic systems
Stronger Connections Grant Program:
In late 2022, the U.S. Department of Education announced nearly $1 billion in awards through the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act (BSCA). In Virginia, the Stronger Connections grants aim to provide students with safe and supportive learning opportunities and environments critical for their success.
Through the BSCA, Congress awarded $1 billion in funding to state educational agencies (SEAs) to develop state grant programs to give students safer and healthier learning environments. The BSCA specifies that SEAs must award these funds competitively to high-need LEAs, as determined by the state.
In November 2022, the Virginia Department of Criminal Justice guided schools in creating school safety plans that qualify for grant funding. These safety plans are crucial in a school’s efforts to “provide a positive and safe school climate where students and staff feel supported—no matter their background—and are socially, emotionally, and physically safe to learn and work.” This grant focuses on helping schools foster sustained learning, engagement, and attachment for students in Virginia schools. The Stronger Connections Grant Program mandates that schools should do this by becoming more resilient, supporting mental health, and improving their school climate.
According to the Department of Education, schools should spend Stronger Connections Grant Program funds to:
Implement evidence-based strategies that meet students’ social, emotional, and mental well-being needs.
Create positive, inclusive, and supportive school environments.
Increase access to place-based interventions and services.
Engage students, families, educators, staff, and community organizations in selecting and implementing strategies to create safe, inclusive, and supportive learning environments.
Design and implement policies and practices responsive to underserved students, protecting student rights, and demonstrating respect for student dignity and potential.
Examples of spending that qualifies for funding include hiring counselors and nurses, expanding mental and behavioral health services, providing teacher training on inclusion and behavioral interventions, and other related efforts to create a positive and supportive climate in Virginia schools.
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 →
Virginia Center for School and Campus Safety
The Virginia Center for School and Campus Safety was created in 2000 to improve and enhance safety in Virginia. It accomplishes this mission by addressing security and safety topics affecting Virginia law enforcement, schools, and higher education institutions. The VCSCS is a resource and training center for information and research about national and statewide safety efforts and initiatives in K-12 schools and higher education institutions. The organization aims to assist Virginia schools in creating and implementing effective school safety solutions.
The VCSC’s mandate includes:
- Provide training for stakeholders.
- Develop, review, and disseminate resources and legislation.
- Facilitate the annual school safety audit.
- Provide technical assistance.
- Develop partnerships to promote school safety and campus in Virginia.
The VCSC School Safety Survey is a yearly web-based survey that provides K-12 public schools with a standardized format for conducting a safety audit. The Virginia School Safety Audit assesses safety conditions in public schools. It develops solutions to improve building security and student safety concerns. The VCSC then recommends structural adjustments, changes in school safety procedures, and revisions to the school board’s standards for student conduct.
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 a Silent Panic Alert Technology (SPAT) 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 Virginia School Safety Standards grant aims 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 Stronger Connections Grant aims to foster.
The CrisisAlert school safety solution provides robust and uninterrupted communication between staff members, administrators, first responders, and students. Unlike other SPAT 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
Our badge-based panic alarm is making headlines for the simplicity and reliability of the incident response solution.
Effective Strategies for Retaining Qualified Teachers
Districts can improve teacher retention rates by ensuring teacher autonomy and safety with mobile panic buttons like CrisisAlert.
Examining Emergency Response Solutions Post-Uvalde
CrisisAlert eliminates communication vulnerabilities and enables rapid incident response, improving outcomes and saving lives.
IN A CRISIS, EVERY SECOND MATTERS.