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School security in Lafayette Parish: now there’s an app for that

Posted at 10:05 PM, Nov 07, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-08 00:18:12-05

When it comes to school security, now, there’s an app for that.

Wednesday night, the Lafayette Parish Sheriff’s Office announced a safety app during the Lafayette Parish School Board meeting.

It’s called the Lafayette Student Protect App. Lt. Mowell with LPSO said it can be used by students, parents and teachers.

“We have to change our culture a little bit and be more security conscious, being aware of what’s going on– whether it’s an emergency or an ongoing, in-progress-type situation, or if they have concerns or fears of other kinds,” said Lt. Mowell.

When you open it, the first thing you will see is an alert button, which is essentially 911, only to be used for emergencies. It’s meant as an easy way to alert law enforcement in case of an emergency on campus.

This app is part of a joint campaign by the sheriff’s office and school system called “See Something, Say Something.”

In the app, you can also click the “see, say” tab to send an anonymous tip to law enforcement.

Although it’s unfortunate that it’s come to this point, parents and law enforcement say this app will help keep kids safe with technology they know how to use.

“I think it allows the kids at a young age to get used to police officers and get used to the positive things that officers and public servants bring to our community,” said J.D. Boudreaux, a Lafayette Parish father who was at the meeting. “I do think it is a sad day  where we have to worry about our kids’ safety when they go to school, but I think the school board is taking the proper steps.”

The school board and sheriff’s office will be officially rolling out the “See Something, Say Something” campaign and the app later this week, but it is already available to down on both iPhones and Androids.

Also at the meeting, the school board and sheriff’s office went into executive session to discuss security issues at each school and went over instances where SROs investigated incidents. School Board President Erick Knezick said since they are discussing sensitive security issues, the meeting and details were not open to the public.