Some $1.98 million in Department of the Interior grant funding has been directed to the Guam Department of Education to outfit 31 schools with a district-wide integrated intercom/paging and bell system.
According to Adelup, the proposed system will be able to instantly relay information to and from the classrooms, especially in instances of emergency like the two recent riots in GDOE schools.
Governor Lou Leon Guerrero said the awarding of funds for intercom/paging and bell system is a direct result of the School Safety Partnership Initiative that was established early in her administration. She said the concerns raised by island educators, parents, and students during those meetings helped frame the administration’s priorities to provide a safe educational environment.
The system will provide a unified advanced crisis response solution across the education system and by modernizing critical communications and emergency response on a district-wide basis,
GDOE will be able to effectively provide communications to schools.
The integrated system will not only facilitate day-to-day management and communications but will also be designed and maintained with emergency response in mind.
Lt. Governor Joshua Tenorio said this is the first of many plans the administration hopes to implement at GDOE in order to improve students’ safety and the quality of education they receive. He said students and teachers shouldn’t have to worry about whether or not they’ll get stuck in the middle of an emergency due to delayed dissemination of information.
For his part, GDOE Superintendent Jon Fernandez said he is looking forward to continued collaboration with the Governor and Lt. Governor in order to improve the quality of education for Guam students.
Fernandez said the approval of this funding will help GDOE allocate local funding for other priorities such as teachers, textbooks, and other capital improvement projects.