SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – After last week’s deadly shooting in Florida, schools are on high alert. In fact, dozens of California schools are now using an emergency notification system developed in Roseville.
“This piece is a communication tool to tell teachers ‘Hey, this is what’s going on,’ and so they can make informed decisions for their students, said Jolie Carreon, Director of School Discipline and Attendance for Marysville Joint Unified School District.
The district uses Catapult EMS, an interactive, emergency notification system. Teachers can report an incident from their computer, iPad or phone.
“This is just one blast to everybody,” Carreon explained. “Everybody’s hooked up. All of our substitutes even.”
Code Yellow is used for warnings, traffic issues, or developing situations, while code red is reserved for the most urgent emergencies, like an active shooter on campus.
“We’re also going over the intercom and telling them to lock down as well,” Carreon said.
The system includes a map telling teachers where to go and includes a student roster.
“I can quickly text on the system that I have Jimmy with me in the south bathroom, we are safe!” Carreon said.
And those notifications also go straight to police.
“Oh, it makes communication instantaneous!” said Christian Sachs, Marysville Police Chief.
Marysville Police Department was the first to use Catapult in conjunction with its school district. And now it’s used on more than 500 school campuses in California including schools in Placer, Sacramento, El Dorado and other counties.
“When we show them the entire system, they’re completely blown away,” said Angie Brown, Director of Sales and Marketing for Catapult. “They didn’t even know that something like this could have existed!”’
And since the Parkland shootings, Brown says interest in the system has only gone up.
“More schools are looking for a product like ours,” she said. “More schools are searching for a product like ours!”
Now, after 4 years of working out the kinks, is Marysville ready if the worst happens on one of its campuses?
“I believe so,” said Christian Sachs, Marysville Police Chief. “For us, communication is key in saving lives and getting information out there.”
Parents don’t have access to the notifications but they can report suspicious activity or send a tip about bullying.