Zeeland Public Schools implements app to keep kids safe

Kent County

ZEELAND, Mich. (WOOD) — It’s a reality of the world we live in, emergency plans at schools playing as critical a role as curriculum. 

Zeeland Public School leaders have been working on a modern way to keep kids safe through an app called CrisisGo. 

CrisisGo is an app designed to streamline emergency preparedness for organizations. It can be used to communicate to all district staff, contact emergency personnel and help staff keep track of students. It’s an app used for internal staff only. 

“If we had the worst-case scenario someone with a weapon coming up to a school, the first staff member that sees it would just hit that button. You don’t have to send a text, you don’t have to make a phone call, you just have to hit a button,” said Zeeland Public Schools Superintendent Cal DeKuiper.

Zeeland’s CrisisGo app has five options, one for each kind of scenario. The options for lockdowns and medical emergencies on the app will trigger calls to 911. There’s an option for shelter in place, another option for severe weather and another for staff assistance. 

DeKuiper said it’s an “easier” way to communicate with all staff, something he thinks the district can always improve on. 

Around 2,000 of Zeeland Public School devices will have the app on it. District staff don’t have to download the app on their personal devices, although they are advised to do so. 

“Every time we have any kind of a critical incident, maybe it’s just a severe injury on a playground that we need to help out, all the way to we have a slow speed car chase in town. Every time we have those we get together and debrief and say what could we do better, and every single time it comes out to it needs to be communication,” said DeKuiper. 

The districts goal is to have the app in use by the end of November. 

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