Green Bay schools upgraded with security alert system

Action 2 News gets a look at the new, $1.8 million system with push-button badges and color-coded strobe lights
Published: Aug. 28, 2023 at 7:42 AM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - Safety and security are top of mind for parents and kids head back to school. As we first alerted you in February, the Green Bay school board approved $1.8 million for a new security system.

“We’ve been doing a lot of testing the system and training staff,” school district chief operations officer Josh Patchak said.

It was a busy summer for Green Bay area public schools. They’ve installed the new security system by Centegix into every public school building.

“Initially we were looking for a solution for loud and large areas where you can’t hear an intercom message really well, because we had a few situations last year where that happened and the kid and the staff didn’t know something was going on in their building,” Patchak explained. Those include gymnasiums, cafeterias, and band or music rooms.

The new crisis alert system has several features, but the most notable is the use of strobe lights throughout each school. The flashing lights are color-coded based on the emergency.

And to show how quick and easy it is, it’s as simple as pressing a button. “I think people are surprised at how easy it is to use,” said Patchak.

Staff will have badges to sound the alarm or lock down the school if there’s an intruder or other type of safety threat -- in which case the system also contacts law enforcement.

It can also be used for a medical emergency or if a teacher needs help.

The alert sends the location of the person who pressed the button.

“When you need help, you need a system that is easy to use and reliable, because those can be stressful situations,” Patchak said.

Students will practice responses to the different alerts. The district wants every student, teacher, staff member and parent to have a safe and secure year full of learning.