New building safety app being developed locally

Already in use by local schools, churches
New building safety app being developed locally
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There’s a new app being developed locally to help improve school security.

Patrick Haase is a current student at Crowder College. However, it was his reflection on his high school days that helped him develop the Building Safe app. Haase says “When we had a lockdown they would send principals down the hallways and use paper and pencil to account for all the students and make sure everybody was safe.”

The app is designed to help streamline that process and make it safer for students and staff in case of a threat to the school. Haase says though, not everyone has access to the app. Haase says “For right now it’s just all staff within a school have access to it along with first responders, just because, you never know, the student could potentially be the threat so we don’t want them getting any of those notifications right now.”

Baxter Springs Superintendent David Pendergraft says his school resource officer approached him about implementing the app in the district. For Pendergraft, it was a no brainer. Pendergraft says “We just like that it’s not one-dimensional and that it carries several facets of crisis that we as school districts have to deal with.”

While the app does contact emergency services, Pendergraft says they will too. Pendergraft says “We still will contact 911, we’ll still go through those things, but we also feel like this kinda can enhance that and make it a little more efficient.”

For parents like Cheryl Moser, recent school shooting incidents have had her worried about school security in general. Moser says “You’re always, in the back of your mind, wondering you know, are we keeping our kids safe are we doing enough to keep them safe.”

She has two kids in Baxter Springs schools and already likes the app. Moser says “I think having a tool like this helps give me confidence that if something were to happen that they would be able to quickly get a hold of authorities and the help that they needed.”

Haase says there are two school districts, including Baxter Springs, as well as a church and the Baxter Springs police department already utilizing the app.