This article was originally published on singlewire.com.
To provide a safe learning environment for students and staff, schools and districts need to know what’s happening inside their buildings to stay ahead of potential threats. Deploying the Cisco Meraki cloud-managed platform and MT environmental sensors throughout school buildings can provide administrators, facility managers, and safety personnel with the insights they need to be aware of incidents. Now, MT sensors can integrate with InformaCast by Singlewire to trigger mass notifications and manage incidents when issues arise.
The InformaCast system extends the reach of MT sensor alerts to a school’s connected communication devices. Text, audio, and visual alerts can be sent throughout a school building or to designated groups via desk phones, desktop computers, overhead speakers and paging systems, digital signage, and mobile devices. Depending on the severity of the situation, InformaCast also serves as an incident management tool, enabling schools to gather key stakeholders via tools like Webex to assess situations and coordinate a response.
In this blog post, we’ll outline common use cases for this integration in schools to detect issues and enhance safety and communication.
A secure school requires locked doors to prevent unwelcome guests from entering. If schools are not monitoring their entrances, they can expose their students and staff to unnecessary risks. MT door open/close sensors can initiate an InformaCast notification when doors have been left open or are opened outside of normal school hours. Schools can set a schedule for when they want to be alerted about opened doors. Text and audio notifications from InformaCast can be sent to specific groups, such as security or facilities teams, on their desk phones, desktop computers, and/or overhead speakers during school hours, and to mobile devices as SMS text, push notifications, and email during off hours.
Air quality MT sensors have the ability to monitor particulate matter, which can be used to detect when students may be vaping on school grounds. InformaCast notifications can be sent to alert school officials, who can then intervene.
MT smart automation buttons can be mounted throughout buildings to request assistance should an issue occur. Teachers and other school staff can press the button when they witness a fight in the hallway, a flooded bathroom, or any kind of safety or maintenance issue that may arise. The ability to send instant alerts from easily accessible devices means school officials can respond quickly and resolve incidents efficiently.
MT sensors can also tie into MV smart cameras. When a button is pressed, an InformaCast notification can be sent with a link to a live camera feed. This provides school officials with real-time insights into the situation that is unfolding so they can deploy an appropriate response.
Spreading the word and managing incidents
It’s not enough for schools to simply know that something is wrong. They need to be able to understand the severity of the situation, let the appropriate people know what is happening, coordinate a response, and communicate when an issue has been resolved so normal activities can resume. By integrating MT sensors with InformaCast, schools and districts can get the initial insights they need, send follow-up messages, gather key stakeholders, and share “all clear” messages. It also offers critical reporting insights so schools can understand what worked in their response, what didn’t, and how they can adjust for the future.
Visit the Meraki Marketplace to learn more about how integrating InformaCast with Meraki MT sensors can help schools and districts enhance threat detection capabilities.