North Carolina District First in the Country to Pilot New Student Safety App

North Carolina District First in the Country to Pilot New Student Safety App

Buncombe County Schools will be the first school district in the U.S. to test a new student safety app designed to help school officials more effectively help students with health or behavioral needs.

Buncombe County Schools will be the first school district in the U.S. to test a new app for student safety app. The Vitals App was created to help school officials better and more effectively respond to crisis incidents involving students who have health or behavioral needs.

Students enrolled in the Vitals App will carry a beacon that will automatically transmit their important health information to key staff members in the school.

The pilot program is funded by the Buncombe County Schools Foundation. According to the foundation’s director, Lisa Adkins, the app could help increase the safety of some of the district’s most vulnerable students.

“The users of the app are chosen providers and they can be a school resource officer, a school nurse, a coach, a principal or assistant principal.  When they get within 80 feet of the student, the information will literally pop up from a secure cloud onto their phone,“ Adkins said.  “So it will say, ‘This is so and so student, they are autistic, these are de-escalation techniques you could use, these are some issues they have.’ That information is available as long as they are within an 80-foot radius.”

According to Vitals President and CEO Janeé Harteau, the app is free for students and officials using the app service will pay a subscription fee monthly. Harteau said the information is stored on a secure cloud and is deleted once the users leave the 80-foot radius of the student.

Police departments in other states are already using the Vitals App, but this is the first time it will be tested in a school setting.

The pilot program, which will last a year, will be rolled out next fall at T.C. Roberson and A.C. Reynolds High Schools. If it’s successful, Lisa Adkins said, it may be rolled out throughout the entire district.

About the Author

Jessica Davis is the Associate Content Editor for 1105 Media.


  • Convergint Gives Back Globally, Celebrates 23rd Annual Social Responsibility Day

    Today, Convergint celebrates its 23rd Annual Convergint Social Responsibility Day, as nearly 10,000 colleagues across 220 global locations have the opportunity to spend the workday giving back to their local communities. This year’s efforts have resulted in a total payroll donation of more than $3 million and more than $500,000 in labor and equipment donations from Convergint colleagues, partners, and families. Additionally, 400 colleagues and partners will help complete the company’s largest STEP Up project to-date for the Douglas County School District in Castle Rock, Colorado. Read Now

  • 2024 Secure Campus Award Winners Announced

    Campus Security Today is pleased to announce the 2024 Secure Campus Award winners. Twenty-six companies are being recognized this year for products that help keep education and business campuses safe. Read Now

  • Making Safety and Security Intrinsic to School Design

    Public anxieties about school safety are escalating across the country. According to a 2023 Gallup report, 44% of parents fear for their child’s physical safety at school, a 10 percentage-point increase since 2019. Unfortunately, these fears are likely to increase if the incidence of school tragedies continues to mount. As a result, school leaders are now charged with two non-negotiable responsibilities. The first, as always, is to ensure kids have what they need to learn, grow, and thrive. Sadly, their second responsibility is to keep the children in their care safe from threats and physical danger. Read Now

  • Unlocking Peace of Mind

    In a perfect world, every school would have an unlimited budget to help secure their schools. In reality, schools must prioritize what budget they have while navigating the complexities surrounding school security and lockdown Read Now