Orleans Parish Communication District, City of New Orleans and Louisiana State Police Partner with Orleans Parish Schools to Launch Rave Panic Button Technology




Orleans Parish Communication District, City of New Orleans and Louisiana State Police
Partner with Orleans Parish Schools to Launch Rave Panic Button Technology

NEW ORLEANS, LA (November 1, 2019)  –The Orleans Parish Communication District (OPCD), in conjunction with the City of New Orleans and Louisiana State Police, have partnered with NOLA Public Schools, the Office of Catholic Schools of the Archdiocese of New Orleans and various Orleans Parish private schools today to announce the launch of the Rave Panic Button application implementation phase in K-12 schools throughout Orleans Parish.

View video of the press conference here.

The Rave Panic Button is a smart phone application designed to speed emergency response to school campuses by alerting authorities when there is a medical emergency, fire, active shooter or any other emergency that requires quick response. When a teacher, administrator or staff member activates the button, it simultaneously places a 9-1-1 call to OPCD, while delivering immediate notification of the type and location of the emergency to other school employees.

“It is imperative that we do everything possible, as a city, state and a school system, collectively – public, private and parochial – to ensure our faculty have the tools they need, should a tragedy land at their doorstep,” stated City of New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell. “The Rave Panic Button application does just that by speeding up response time in the event of an emergency. We have seen issues arise across the country, and we are being as proactive as possible in our leadership positions to be prepared, and doing all we can to make sure our people have what they need in order to respond as quickly as possible.”

Once OPCD has received the call, the agency then has the ability to connect with the specific person who made the alert, communicate with all school employees on campus, and communicate information directly to first responders as they travel to, and arrive on, the scene of the emergency.

“This is an exciting move forward for emergency response in Orleans Parish,” stated OPCD Executive Director, Tyrell Morris. “The ability to obtain immediate, up-to-date, information and quickly communicate it to emergency responders will save minutes and seconds necessary to provide help to those who need it most.”

The Rave Panic Button App can be downloaded onto the phones of teachers, administrators, staff members and other school employees such as custodians and food service workers. In the event of an emergency, anyone on campus with the app can report an emergency.

All Orleans Parish public, private and parochial schools are encouraged to opt into using the Rave Panic Button as part of their safety strategies.

“Every second counts when it comes to emergency situations on school campuses,” said NOLA Public Schools Superintendent, Dr. Henderson Lewis, Jr. “Advancements in technology are making it easier for us to prepare our schools for any emergency. We owe it to our students, teachers and families to empower them with the necessary tools to keep our school campuses alert, trained and prepared.”

“One of our top priorities is the safety of our school communities,” stated Superintendent of the Office of Catholic Schools of the Archdiocese of New Orleans, Dr. RaeNell Billiot Houston. “We are happy to continue our work and partnership with civil authorities to make our school communities safe places to learn and grow in faith. We are grateful to all of those that have made this possible.”

The use of Rave Panic Button in Orleans Parish K-12 schools follows a statewide initiative put in place by Louisiana Governor, John Bel Edwards, designed to improve response to incidents that threaten school safety. The state of Louisiana has contracted with Rave to provide software to all schools that will allow teachers to quickly request immediate assistance from first responders in the event of a health or safety emergency in the classroom.

When an authorized teacher or staff member activates Rave Panic Button, it immediately calls 9-1-1, while also sending and providing emergency notifications to people on site of the incident. Through a companion application installed at OPCD, critical response data and information, such as where a call is coming from, points of entry and building floor plans, are provided to 9-1-1 telecommunicators and first responders to assist in coordinating a more efficient, safer and faster response.

“NOPD is eager to be part of this program and use the latest technology to help keep our children safe and their futures bright,” said NOPD Superintendent, Shaun Ferguson.

“This effort represents an integral partnership between local and state public safety agencies and our schools,” said New Orleans Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness Director, Collin Arnold. “I appreciate the level of coordination, planning, and data sharing that has gone into the launch of this app and truly believe that investing in this technology can help save lives when seconds count and minutes matter.”

By partnering with New Orleans first responders through the technology provided by Rave Mobile Safety, Orleans Parish schools can automatically provide additional data and information to speed up the emergency response. Providing first responders with this valuable information before they arrive at the scene of the emergency improves response time, situational awareness and ability to save lives.

“The preservation and protection of life and property is the primary objective of the New Orleans Fire Department and this goal cannot be under stated when it comes to the safety and protection of our children”, stated NOFD Superintendent, Timothy McConnell. “The Rave Panic Button increases the efficiency of an effective emergency response. This will be a great benefit to not just the NOFD but all branches of New Orleans Emergency Services.”

“New Orleans EMS regularly introduces new technology and medical devices as we keep up with healthcare advancements,” states Dr. Emily Nichols, Director of New Orleans EMS, “hence we are excited that our partners at OPCD are implementing Rave Panic Button, as this tool will give vital information to all first responders.”   

Training for use of the Rave Panic Button app will be provided to school administrators and employees through the Rave Online Academy and personal, in-house training on the school’s campus. The training is designed to ensure school employees are familiar with all app functionality and can execute an emergency call quickly and efficiently should the need arise.

“Everyone has the right to feel safe at school, at play, or at work,” said Todd Miller, COO, Rave Mobile Safety. “Emergency plans save lives when they’re triggered quickly, and when first responders and on-site staff have the information they need in order to act appropriately. Rave is proud to be working with the schools and first responders of Orleans Parish to make each student, teacher and staff member safer.”

About NOLA Public Schools (www.nolapublicschools.com/)
NOLA Public Schools (NOLA-PS) is the public school district for Orleans Parish, which shares the exact same boundaries as the City of New Orleans. It includes our elected school board, entitled the Orleans Parish School Board, our district administration lead by Superintendent Dr. Henderson Lewis, Jr., and our 79 public schools. NOLA Public Schools at its heart is an organization dedicated to the success of every New Orleans public school student. The promise of American education is the opportunities that it should make accessible. New Orleans must deliver on this promise; our work is expansive, and urgent. We truly believe every child and every school can succeed with hard work every day.

About Office of Catholic Schools of the Archdiocese of New Orleans (www.nolacatholicschools.org)
The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New Orleans is home to approximately 500,000 Catholics in the eight civil parishes of Orleans, Jefferson, Plaquemines, St. Bernard, St. Charles, St. John the Baptist, St. Tammany, and Washington.  Established as a Catholic diocese in 1793, it is one of the oldest Catholic dioceses in the country and has been one of the shaping influences of New Orleans’ culture.  Today, the archdiocese continues Jesus Christ’s work of evangelization and care for the poor through its 110 church parishes, 74 Catholic schools and numerous social apostolate ministries that provide food, clothing, housing, counseling and much more to the most vulnerable of our society.  Lead by Most Reverend Gregory M. Aymond, 14th Archbishop of New Orleans, the Catholic Church in New Orleans has been a vital part of New Orleans’ post-Katrina rebirth from reopening schools to rebuilding homes to responding to crisis in the New Orleans community.

About Louisiana State Police (www.lsp.org/)
Louisiana State Police is a statutorily mandated, statewide law enforcement agency. LSP provides public safety services across the state on numerous levels to ensure the safety and security of Louisiana.

About New Orleans Police Department (www.nola.gov/nopd/)
The mission of the New Orleans Police Department is to provide professional police services to the public in order to maintain order and protect life and property. In order to accomplish our mission, we are committed to the philosophy of Community Oriented Policing as a means to inform our organizational decisions and prioritize our crime fighting and quality of life initiatives by engaging each neighborhood and community organization in collaborative problem-solving partnerships. 

About New Orleans Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness
NOHSEP coordinates crises – both natural and man-made – through “all-hazards” planning, information sharing, situational awareness, public safety support and mitigation strategies and programming. Our initiatives build New Orleans’ capacity to prevent, protect against, respond to, and recover from major emergencies and disasters.

About New Orleans Fire Department (www.nola.gov/nofd/)
The mission of the New Orleans Fire Department is to protect citizens from the devastating effects of fire. Of course, one of those methods is to extinguish them but, we are more cost-effective when we are “proactive” in preventing them. Therefore, our ultimate goal is to prevent as many fires as possible and put into place systems which allow for the earliest detection of fires rather than simply waiting until they occur. We do this to avoid greater loss of life, property and potential injuries to both firefighters and the residents we serve.

About New Orleans Emergency Medical Services (www.nola.gov/ems/)
New Orleans Medical Emergency Services is dedicated to providing the highest quality pre-hospital emergency care to individuals living in and visiting New Orleans.

As public servants, EMS provides time-sensitive, medically-sound and respectful, compassionate delivery of this pre-hospital health care.

About Rave Mobile Safety (www.ravemobilesafety.com)
Rave Mobile Safety provides innovative emergency and public safety technology to help save lives. The Rave platform integrates data and communication tools to help those in charge of keeping others safe prepare better, respond faster and communicate more effectively in emergency situations. Thousands of agencies and institutions across law enforcement, 9-1-1, state and local emergency management agencies, corporations, healthcare organizations, K–12 districts, colleges and universities depend on Rave’s award-winning software solutions. Founded in 2004, Rave is headquartered in Framingham, Mass. and backed by leading growth equity firm TCV. For more information, visit www.ravemobilesafety.com or follow the company on Twitter.

About Orleans Parish Communications District (www.911nola.org)  
Formed in 1982, the Orleans Parish Communication District is the public safety answering point (PSAP) for all emergency communications via 9-1-1 within Orleans Parish.  The agency employs over 140 individuals and provides emergency medical dispatch, emergency fire dispatch, and emergency police dispatch for the millions of annual visitors and residents of the City of New Orleans. OPCD is a member of the Association of Public Safety Communication Officials (APCO) and the National Emergency Number Association (NENA).


OPCD Contact:
Marcus W. Creel, MS
OPCD Public Engagement Manager
[email protected]