FOR THE RECORD

High-Tech Meets Visitor Sign-In at DMPS

Wednesday, February 17th, 2016

Introducing Electronic Visitor Check-In:

Supporting the Safety and Security of our Students and Schools in Des Moines

In a step to further enhance student and school safety, the visitor sign-in process at DMPS is about to go high-tech.

In a step to further enhance student and school safety, the visitor sign-in process at DMPS is about to go high-tech.

At Des Moines Public Schools, we work to ensure that students are receiving a great education in schools that are not only first-rate learning environments, but are also safe and secure.

Over the years DMPS has taken many steps to better ensure the safety and well being of our students, staff, parents and visitors. It’s a responsibility we take very seriously. Which is why every year we strive to improve upon the things we are already doing.

In 2016, DMPS will begin implementing an Electronic Visitor Check-In (EVC) system. The School Board recently approved a company to install this service, and a pilot program will begin this spring at King, Capitol View and Lovejoy elementary schools before the system is installed in elementary schools district-wide this spring and summer.

All visitors who come to our schools will sign in using this new system. EVC will use a visitor’s driver’s license to capture their name and date of birth, and then perform an instant screening for sex offenders and no-contact orders. It will also provide the school with a complete list of who is in the building in the event of an emergency. The system is similar to what is in place at many public buildings and private offices around the country.

As DMPS continues to improve and enhance our schools, EVC will contribute to the safety of our students and visitors alike. For more information, please refer to the questions and answers below.

Questions & Answers for Parents

Why are you investing in an electronic visitor check-in system?
Electronic Visitor Check-In (EVC) allows us to track visitors within our schools. This helps us in three ways:

  1. A large part of student safety is knowing school visitors are allowed to be around children;
  2. In the event of a fire or other emergency we know who is inside our buildings;
  3. The district can better manage volunteers and volunteer hours.

How will this make a school safer?
Your school’s EVC will scan sex offender registries nationwide to be certain school visitors are not listed. Additionally, the system will be able to track no contact orders entered into Infinite Campus.

Will this prevent me from coming to see my child at school?
No. Parents are encouraged to volunteer and participate in school activities.

Who will be required to check into the system? What if I’m just picking up my child for a doctor’s appointment?
Only those visitors who move beyond the office to interact with students will be checked in using this system. If you remain in the office when picking up your child, you will not be required to use EVC.

Do visitors need to checkout when they leave?
Yes. We ask that all visitors checkout of the system when they leave. This will (1) provide an accurate summary of who is in the building in case of an emergency, and (2) allow the district to track volunteer hours accurately.

What if I don’t want to scan my ID or don’t have a state issue ID?
We offer manual procedures for sign-in.

Who will see what is scanned?
This information will be available to authorized administrators. If there is a match to the sex offender registry or if the system indicates a person has been barred from the building, our Public Safety Officer and building administration will be notified.

Are you just trying to collect my data to sell to outside companies?
Des Moines Public Schools does not sell student, parent or staff information under any circumstances.

What if a sex offender is a parent and has a son or daughter at the school?
In accordance with district policy, special arrangements are made with building administration for accommodations during teacher conferences and certain special events.

When will my child’s school have EVC?
The goal is for every elementary school to have Electronic Visitor Check-In by the start of the 2016-2017 school year.  Installation will be staggered throughout the spring and summer.

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