CHARLESTON COUNTY, S.C. (WCBD) — The Charleston County School District is rolling out a new text messaging system to notify parents, students and staff during emergency situations.
Starting now, the new system “CCSD Alerts” is sending out an opt-in text message to parents, students and staff of Charleston County Schools to enroll in the new district-wide notification system.
The feature is called “School Messenger.” It allows the district to send notifications during emergency situations to parents, high school students of the impacted school(s), and district personnel.
CCSD’s Director of Security and Emergency Management, Michael Reidenbach, says in the age of social media, they want to be able to give parents the most accurate, up-to-date information in the quickest way possible.
“We know that if anything happens at the school, people are obviously going to be concerned about their students, it’s a natural response,” Reidenbach said. “We want this tool to help to that, to provide good information, assure parents that students are safe. If that’s the case in that situation, let them know what we are doing to address it and any instructions we may have for them.”
The messages will be brief, as there is a 160 character limit. The goal is to let people know what is going on, and after any situation, the system will send follow-up messages.
Example of text messages:
- Prolonged Code Yellow (Ex: police activity in the area, police investigation on campus, on-campus search, suspicious person in the area)
- Code Red (Ex: suspicious person on campus, possible weapon on campus, shots fired on campus)
- Code Green (Ex: bomb threat)
- Prolonged Utility Outages (Ex: phone, power, and/or water outage)
In order to receive these messages, people have to have their current phone number on file. To make sure of that, click here.
For more information on the emergency response codes that may appear in the messages, click here.