The Westmont Hilltop School District board of directors took another step toward increasing the safety of its students and staff this week with the approval of two motions.

The approvals, which were given during Thursday’s regular board meeting, were for the purchase and implementation of CrisisGo, a mass notification and emergency system; and for School Gate Guardian, a visitor management system.

“This is part of the overall effort over the last 21/2 years by the district to create safer buildings for our students and staff,” said board President Jeffrey Masterson. “I am extremely pleased with the progress we’ve made. We had a goal that we wanted to make this school as safe as possible, but not make it into a fortress. 

“I think the progress is absolutely phenomenal, and I give full credit to all the committee members around me,” he said. “They’ve worked really hard.”

The board’s approvals for CrisisGo and School Gate Guardian come with a cost of $4,650 and $19,000, respectively. 

Grant funding received last month by the district for the purchase of safety and school-related equipment will be used to cover the contracts’ costs.

According to district superintendent Thomas Mitchell, the new systems will be put in place after the start of the new year.

“We have implemented the free version of CrisisGo and look forward to the expanded capabilities of the full version,” he said.

Ronald Fisher is a reporter for The Tribune-Democrat. Follow him on Twitter @FisherSince_82.

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