How to Satisfy Alyssa's Law Requirements

K-12 schools in New Jersey are now required to meet new safety standards after the state passed “Alyssa’s Law” as of February 2019. The law’s namesake is Alyssa Alhadeff, a victim of the Parkland shooting that killed 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas Highschool.

The new law has two basic requirements:

  1. Public elementary and secondary schools must install panic buttons for use in the event of a non-fire evacuation, lockdown, or active shooter threat that will remain silent while alerting local law enforcement

  2. An emergency light must be affixed to the exterior of the building

With countless panic button options available, it’s hard to know which will truly fit your school's needs. Read on as we cut through the noise and find the best panic button solutions for affordable, instant notification to help you meet Alyssa’s Law requirements.

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Requirement One: Silently Alerting Law Enforcement

Alertus Technologies offers a wide array of physical, computer-based, and electronic panic button options to fulfill your alerting needs. We also provide additional panic button capabilities via our Alertus Desktop Activator, which can launch alerts to dispatchers through keyboard hotkeys and system tray icons. Wall-mounted emergency buttons or physical panic buttons, can quickly launch a general emergency alert to your entire school and local law enforcement with just a simple push.

Depending on your school's needs, crisis response officials have the ability to configure custom event triggers to enhance the default panic button capabilities. This powerful feature allows users to send alerts based on dynamic groups, as well as the location of the incident. This activation will then launch emergency alerts to selected recipients carried out from a single panic button activation.

Having the ability to create custom alerts for any emergency saves school officials valuable time, and ensures that local authorities receive clear and concise information in order to deploy an effective response in a timely manner.

Learn how Laclede County Office of Emergency Management discovered a way to send alerts to police patrol cars with the Alertus System

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Requirement Two: Visual Alerting

Strobe lights help overcome challenges such as loud environments (recess, school cafeterias, etc.) and fulfill the emergency light requirement of Alyssa’s Law. You can customize your panic button solution so that it can trigger exterior or interior strobe lights to turn on (steady-on mode) or begin flashing when an alert is launched. This will notify your constituents, local law enforcement, and the nearby community that an emergency is taking place. Incorporating other visual alerting devices such as digital signage and cable tv override can help fill notification gaps by using text to display clear and concise instructions.

Explore our Audible-Visual Solutions

Alertus K-12 Solutions

Alertus offers a wide array of additional notification solutions to facilitate comprehensive alerting, including the wall-mounted Alert Beacon®, LED marquee display, VoIP phone alerting, and mobile apps. These solutions effectively communicate emergency alerts throughout your school to keep visitors, faculty, staff, and students safe.

If you’re looking for free resources to help you or your school better understand and facilitate emergency management, please visit the Alertus Resources.

Rachel Choppin