I assume this is an IP-based PBX? If so use WLAN handsets that interface through any existing wireless infrastructure in the school.I've engineered phone systems for a number of schools. We ended up having break the phone lines up into three trunk groups: inbound, outbound, and PS/ALI. The problems we encountered were:
- As soon as parents heard something was going down, they flooded the school with calls and blocked PSAP call back.
- Because of the flood of incoming calls, no additional outgoing (including 911) calls could be made.
- During an emergency, staff members would flood our outbound lines with "I'm okay" calls.
- We tried 911 preemption but that didn't pass legal muster and created new problems.
As a result, when a 911 call is made, it now goes on a dedicated trunk and the caller ID displayed at the PSAP is a unique number which comes in on that dedicated trunk group. Now we have good, workable 911 service.
The only problem now is that emergencies happen during after school events and all the phones are locked in offices and classrooms. We have to hope we can get an administrator / keyholder and convince them to remain at that phone in case there's a callback instead of returning to the scene.
Motorola was able to take advantage of the States program to enhance school security and the Chardon tragedy.
The program for the schools has two options.
1. They could get one radio for each school buildings main office.
2. Or they could get $5000 per building to use for security entrance systems.
Here's a link to the program info: Ohio School Security Grant Program / MARCS In-School Emergency Communications – The Association of Public Safety Communications Officials
kf8yk,The system described in the original article is not part of or funded by the MARCS in Schools grant program.
Schoolsafe is a new product that was looking for a school district to demonstrate the product. Chardon received the entire system at no cost including hundreds of MotoTRBO handhelds, several base stations/repeaters and the interoperability switches.