We’ve all been there when the headlines come on the news about another school safety breach. It doesn’t matter if it’s in our own city, one nearby, or one on the other side of the country, we say to ourselves, “There’s got to be a better way.” And that’s where the conversation usually ends because school systems just don’t have the money to install major league security systems on all their campuses…. Or do they?
When Houston’s Cypress-Fairbanks Independent School System asked themselves this question, they came up with a novel approach – instead of waiting for the state or federal government to provide necessary funds, why not use the funds of a community bond project to benefit all schools in the district.
“It was a tall order,” says Josh Solis, Project Manager for the School District. “But when we looked at the cost of replacing an obsolete system, including digging, trenching, IT and telephone involvement, we needed to know our next system would stand the test of time so we weren’t repeating this process in just a few years.” CASE’s quality construction, remote monitoring system for maintenance, and made-in-the-USA fabrication gave the district the confidence they needed to commit to 50 units throughout the district at a cost of $775,000 which was fully supported by bonds with no decrease to school budgets for curriculum and instructional materials.
What made it possible is the 100% wire-free design and installation option for CASE Blue Light Towers and other emergency communications products. A solar panel power each unit while also producing enough spare energy to charge an on-board battery that can offer up to 10 days of back-up power. Voice and video communications are connected via cellular technology or satellite phone with the client’s provider of choice. Connections route directly to 911 operators, city dispatchers, or other designated emergency contact of the host location’s choice. And, the optional CASE Alert monitoring system automatically checks and notifies maintenance personnel if a unit has been tampered with or needs repair. While the CFISD installation did include a few hard-wired units to accommodate the addition of video surveillance equipment, the majority of units were all wire free.
Until the day school safety isn’t a concern we have to shoulder as a community. CASE will be there to make sure the call for help is answered when it’s needed most. (See the full case study here)