BCPS unveils Alyssa’s Alert in new initiative to add additional layer of security for students, staff

FORT LAUDERDALE, FLA. (WSVN) - A local school district unveiled a new app years after the Marjory Stoneman Douglas massacre, adding a new layer of security for students.

Broward County Public Schools announced a new initiative to keep students and staff safe.

The district launched Alyssa’s Alert — a mobile app that allows school employees to immediately contact law enforcement during an emergency with the push of a button.

“Once that button is pushed, it’s directly linked to law enforcement, and we’re fully integrated in a 911 center,” said school board member Lori Alhadeff.

The initiative was spearheaded by Alhadeff whose daughter, Alyssa Alhadeff, lost her life during the massacre.

“On February 14, 2018, during the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting, I texted Alyssa, told her to run and hide, that help was on the way,” Alhadeff said. “Unfortunately, that help didn’t arrive fast enough. If the guy on the golf cart had Alyssa’s Alert and pushed the button, lives would have been saved.”

The app allows users to post videos and pictures in real-time and allows law enforcement to track their location as long as they remain on campus.

“It provides detailed information such as the exact coordinates of the user’s location to help first responders respond quickly,” said BCPS Interim Superintendent Dr. Vickie Cartwright.

Alhadeff said she hopes the app will help prevent tragedies like the one in Parkland from ever happening again.

“We will always honor and remember the 17 lost on that tragic day, but now with Alyssa’s Alert, we will mitigate the next tragedy,” Alhadeff said.

The app is available for school employees across the state.

In Broward County, more than 5,000 eligible employees have already downloaded and registered on the app.

The BCPS Board said this is the latest tool to help save lives.