Abilene ISD Introduces Crisis Alert App

Abilene ISD Introduces Crisis Alert App

Teachers can use CrisisGo to communicate alerts simultaneously to other teachers on campus as well as staff members, local law enforcement and first responders, according to AISD Safety and Security Coordinator Dan Cottner.

Abilene Independent School District in Abilene, Texas, has begun using an emergency alert app to help ensure student and staff safety on campuses. The app, called CrisisGo, allows teachers to broadcast and receive alerts on their laptops, cell phones and tablets during an emergency.

Teachers can use CrisisGo to communicate alerts simultaneously to other teachers on campus as well as staff members, local law enforcement and first responders, according to AISD Safety and Security Coordinator Dan Cottner.

"So, within 30 seconds, I can let the entire community know what's going on," Cottner said.

If there is a campus emergency and an alert is broadcast, teachers can use the app to let administrators know the status of their students: if they’re all safe, if some are missing or if some are in other locations. Teachers can use the panic broadcast feature to alert staff to emergencies.

Bonham Elementary School Assistant Principal Kevin Wellborn said the app was more efficient for emergency alerts than the previous methods of communication because CrisisGo guarantees everyone receives the message clearly.

"We got PA systems, but that’s not heard on the playground and maybe not heard at the gym, whereas this goes right to the teacher. It goes to their phones and it’s also on their iPads and it’s on their computer,” Wellborn said.

AISD saw its first use of the CrisisGo app last month at Madison Middle School and Jackson Elementary School when authorities in the area were looking for a man accused of stealing an SUV and running away.

"Within seconds of receiving that, they were able to use the app and send out that lockdown alert. Every teacher got the alert and instantly knew what was going on as opposed to the past where you have to rely on word of mouth, portable radio or digital phone system," Cottner said.

The app can also be used in situations like bomb threats or fires.

About the Author

Jessica Davis is the Associate Content Editor for 1105 Media.

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    October 2018

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