Share911 CEO Talks Teen Violence and School Safety

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Share911 announces partnership with the New Jersey Association Of School Administrators (NJASA)

RAMSEY, NJ – In a major step forward for emergency preparedness and school safety, Share911 is pleased to announce its partnership with the New Jersey Association of School Administrators (NJASA).  Effective immediately Share911 and NJASA will jointly work towards ensuring the readiness of school districts throughout the State of NJ in the event of an emergency.

Share911 connects people on the scene of an emergency with First Responders.  First Responders gain a real-time, prioritized look into the incident and can notify staff on-demand as needed.  School administrators can effectively manage incidents as they progress, even if they are off-site.  School personnel can quickly account for and alert others of missing or found children.

“Since Newtown, CT, school districts across the state have been increasingly more focused on protecting their students and staff.  Working with the NJASA enables every district in N.J. to bring this ground-breaking school safety tool to their schools,” said Erik Endress, CEO of Share911, and a first-responder for over 28 years.

NJASA Executive Director Dr. Richard Bozza said, “The Share911 system function is extremely beneficial and certainly prepares New Jersey’s learning environments for the unexpected. The ability for teachers and others to use smart phones, computers and iPad tablets to transmit their locations and statuses immediately to school, local and police officials is extremely valuable for all New Jersey residents.”

The New Jersey Association of School Administrators is an organization of chief education officers and school administrators who lead school districts in New Jersey’s 21 counties. The association’s mission is to ensure a superior statewide system of education. 

NJ districts can apply their upcoming New Jersey School Boards Insurance Group (NJSBAIG) Safety Grants towards the purchase of the Share911 system.

NJ CSA's interested in learning more about bringing Share911 to their schools can inquire here

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Midland Park approves new safety measure for schools

Share With 911, a web-based communications tool that connects school personnel with first responders in the event of an emergency, is the latest security measure the Board of Education has adopted in the aftermath of the school tragedy in Newtown, Conn.

At the June 18 meeting, the board approved a one-year contract for $6,150 with OnScene Technologies Inc. of Ramsey to provide it with the web-based application for the 2013-2014 school year.

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Saddle Brook BOE looking at school lockdown system

The Saddle Brook Board of Education's School Land Security Committee is looking into a program called Share with 911, which would create an emergency notification network linked directly to the police in the event of a lockdown.

Share with 911 would enable police and faculty to broadcast real-time alerts for lockdowns and evacuations via text messages sent directly to cell phones.

"Currently in a lockdown situation, the principal of the school will announce on the PA system using a code, and then the staff and faculty lock the doors," said BOE and Committee Member Bill Havison. "This program allows the entire staff to log onto"

Havison said the program is currently being used by other districts in the county.

"It cuts out the middleman," he said.

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Selling Better School safety

Ramsey man's venture uses common technology to improve emergency communication between educators, first responders.  Ramsey man is combining his experiences in school administration and public safety in a new business venture aimed at improving emergency communication between the two, especially as the demand for more security in schools grows. 

Erik Endress, a volunteer first responder for the borough since 1985 who also was a technology specialist for the New Jersey School Boards Association from 2009 to 2012, noticed through his work in both fields that emergency communication between school districts and public safety officials could be faster by using the technology that's common in many classrooms.

He partnered with Adrian Lanning of Norwalk, Conn., to build a wireless communications platform.

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School Safety in Bergen County

Bergen County prosecutor emphasizes readiness at school safety forum


PARAMUS — Police officers in Bergen County are prepared to respond swiftly and effectively to a report of a shooter in a school building, the county prosecutor, John L. Molinelli, said Wednesday night at a forum on school safety at Paramus High School.

Even so, Molinelli said his office is helping districts that have asked for guidance to assess 158 buildings in the coming months, to gauge whether they could take any more steps to improve security.

Molinelli addressed about 100 parents, school board members and law enforcement officials at the forum, which was scheduled in the wake of the Newtown, Conn., elementary school shooting. In the case of a shooting incident, he said, parents should restrain themselves from following their gut instinct to rush to school and get their children.

“The worst thing you can do as a parent is go to that school,” he said. “You are subjecting yourself to risk and making it very difficult for our brave law enforcement” officers to do their job. Instead, he said, parents should gather in a safe area dictated by officials so they can wait for information and instructions.

The panel of police chiefs and school officials was one of several hosted statewide by the New Jersey School Boards Association since the Newtown shooting in December, when authorities said a disturbed loner killed 20 children and six educators at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

The meeting attracted representatives from companies selling technology for school safety. One was started by a Ramsey rescue squad member, Erik Endress, who said his new emergency notification service,, has been hired by 23 districts since December, including five in Bergen County.

Endress, a former Ramsey school board member and technology specialist for the New Jersey School Boards Association, said he developed the Web-based service so educators and first responders can be in quick contact in case of danger, and share details about instructions and students’ whereabouts.

The system lets any authorized teacher or school employee log into the website via cellphone, tablet or computer to lock down a school and alert police and administrators to any threats. If police officers or school employees broadcast an alert by email or text message, teachers can respond with their locations and say which students are missing, injured or trapped as hostages.

Endress said this technology was a big improvement on public-address systems that often require users to come to a central location, which can take time and put them in jeopardy.

“In some schools teachers are told to tape Xs on windows of classrooms to communicate with first responders, and that’s not practical,” he said.

Endress started promoting his service two weeks before the Newtown shooting. It costs $3 per month per school employee authorized to use it, and public safety officials have access for free. In Bergen County, he has contracts with the Ridgewood, Northern Highlands Regional High School, Upper Saddle RiverHo-Ho-Kus and New Milford school districts.

Bruce De Young, the interim superintendent in Ramsey, said he was considering

“It seems promising,” he said. “It can be used for a lot of things other than active shooters, such as fires or students who are ill in a classroom. It’s a way to communicate back and forth even in a lockdown to see classroom by classroom how everyone is faring.”

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Chester Tests Share With 911

Dickerson School has first test of new incident communication system with Share With 911.

By Russ Crespolini

The Chester Consolidated School District began their pilot program last week of an innovative new program designed to help facilitate communication during a lockdown event.

With Share With 911, staff can share real-time, live information with first responders during a critical event by using their computers, tablets and smart phones. The Share With 911 Broadcast Center enables authorized school personnel and law enforcement officers to broadcast information electronically, instantly informing all teachers, administrators, staff members, 911 and Law Enforcement personnel of the situation and what action to take.

Authorized users can do this from their desktop PC, a laptop, a tablet or on a smartphone. Broadcasts are immediately sent via text message and email to all registered users, eliminating face-to-face contact or phone calls that can waste valuable time.

Local police officers also are notified instantly, instead of waiting for the 911 call to come in and be dispatched via radio. Now, a police officer who happens to be around the corner from the school when an alert is received can immediately respond and take action.

“This means that first responders can get to where they need to go faster, to help mitigate a threat, or to get help to those who need it,” said Chester Superintendent Dr. Christina VanWoert. “Using smart phones or computers, teachers can check in and let district administrators and police personnel know where all their students are and the status of their situation.”

According to VanWoert, if for whatever reason a child is not accounted for, there is the option to issue an “all call” for this student in a safe and secure manner using technology.

And VanWoert said the communication flows both ways.

“First responders can also immediately update teachers in real time as to the status and severity of a situation, issuing them critical directions and information as to how to proceed,” VanWoert said. “We are very pleased to, once again, be playing a leading role in advancing security throughout the county and in putting student and staff safety first.”

Chester Township Chief of Police Wayne Martini, who was present for the drill, said he was pleased with the program and how it was implemented.

“It went really well. The implementation of the technology, it puts you ahead of the game in regards to safety,” Martini said. “It is my opinion that all schools should be doing this.” 

Chester is not the kind of district to take a back seat in pushing progress, and Business Administrator Mary Jane Canose said that this test was just the start.

"One of the most important issues during a crisis is communication and it's also one of the most difficult to manage.  Share With 911 is a simple but brilliant system to address this issue,” Canose said. “What most impressed us in the drill was being able to know immediately the status of everyone in the building.  We are proud to be the first district in Morris County to make this program available to our staff."

 Another test of the system is scheduled for next month at the Black River Middle School.

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Share With 911 on Ebru Today

Share With 911 appeared on Ebru Today, a morning cable news show that reaches residents of the Mid-Atlantic. 

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Share With 911 is the best web application of the year for K-12 schools

Summary: Chris Dawson of ZDNet says Share With 911 may just be the best solution he's seen for improving school safety. And it's incredibly simple, leveraging ubiquitous classroom and consumer technology. In fact, even though it's only the second day of 2013, he called Share With 911 the best web application of the year for K-12 schools.

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