Safety reporting app adopted by N.Y. district
In an effort to increase the safety of its students, Putnam Valley Central School District has added a new anti-bullying and safety communications tool called Anonymous Alerts. This mobile app system allows for the quick, easy, and anonymous reporting of urgent information regarding student safety to school officials. Students, parents, and staff are encouraged to confidentially and anonymously report student safety concerns such as bullying, cyberbullying, drug or alcohol use, fights, and more. All incident reports remain anonymous unless the submitter selects the option to reveal their identity.
"As an added component of our commitment to student safety, we are announcing our launch of Anonymous Alerts, which empowers our students, parents and staff to effectively report urgent information to school officials across all of our school campuses. When the submitter provides an email or cell number, which is immediately encrypted by Anonymous Alerts, we are able to begin a confidential AND anonymous dialogue," said Dr. Frances Wills, Superintendent of Schools. "Our students are encouraged to continue to go to a trusted adult, but I understand that at times an anonymous report may be preferred. Our top priority is the safety of our students, and we believe that Anonymous Alerts will increase the reporting of anything that threatens that safety."
The Anonymous Alerts app can be downloaded for free from the Apple or Google Play app stores, and can be accessed with a simple activation code. Web-based reporting is also available to students, parents and staff. Anyone wishing to submit information anonymously can go to the Putnam Valley School District's website and click on the Anonymous Alerts button, using any Internet-enabled device or computer. The Anonymous Alerts system is monitored between the hours of 7am-5pm, Monday through Friday on regular school days. Additional topics for submission may include family issues, student depression, sexual harassment, or unusual student behavior.
"We're excited to partner with Putnam Valley Central School District in helping their students, parents and staff submit reports anonymously to school officials," said Gregory Bender, President & CEO of Anonymous Alerts, LLC. "64%* of students who are bullied do not report it, and we want to change that. With as many as 96%* of students using cell phones, we believe that our Anonymous Alerts app will be effective in the fight against bullying and other sensitive student issues that would otherwise go unreported."
Showing their enthusiasm and support for the app several agencies in Putnam County have donated grants to fund the launch of the Anonymous Alerts system throughout all of Putnam County's schools. We would like to acknowledge the generous contributions made by the following:
- The Suicide Prevention Task Force of Putnam County
- The Child Advocacy Center of Putnam County's Safe Harbour Program
- The Mental Health Association in Putnam County
- National Council on Alcoholism & Other Drug Dependencies/Putnam
- Putnam Communities That Care Coalition (CTC)
About Anonymous Alerts
The Anonymous Alerts app and system was developed to address core issues surrounding the quick reporting of bullying, cyberbullying, depression, drugs, dating violence, weapons and safety threats at school campuses directly to authorized personnel. Anonymous Alerts is Patented (U.S. Patent No. 9,071,579) with additional patents pending. Anonymous Alerts, LLC is based in White Plains, NY and rapidly growing throughout the United States and abroad. For more information, please visit www.anonymousalerts.com or call 888-291-2090 or 914-220-8326.
*Sources: PACER's National Bullying Prevention Center, Cyberbullying Research Center