Greater Clark County Schools adds vape detectors to some schools to help protect students

Greater Clark County Schools installs vape detectors to help detect vape smoke and other disturbances at schools.
Published: Apr. 5, 2023 at 6:35 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - There’s a new tool popping up in some Southern Indiana schools that are designed to improve student safety.

Greater Clark County Schools has installed vape detectors in some buildings that will send alerts when they detect vape smoke or loud noises.

Contrary to popular belief, these vape detectors are not just used to detect vapes and smoke, but are environmental sensors that can detect any disturbance or noise that is not deemed normal to a certain location on school campuses.

The goal is to help schools protect students from any dangers.

Clarksville High School has plans to add new environmental sensors to the school, as a way to protect students.

Greater Clark County Schools has already taken an initiative to install them.

“Whether it be where a student is in an altercation in a remote place that’s unsupervised or whether they’re doing something they shouldn’t in a place that’s unsupervised it allows us to respond to those things,” GCCS Director of Facilities Jeremey Shireman said.

Shireman said the devices learn the common noises in their environment and send alerts to staff when there is a noise or disturbance it doesn’t expect.

“So whether it be a principal, an SRO, an assistant principal or whoever, it’ll send them a text message that immediately alerts them that there is something going on or that there’s a foreign substance burning or there’s a loud noise that would be unexpected,” Shireman said.

There are currently five of these sensors found across the district and are located in places like bathrooms, locker rooms and secluded hallways.

Administrators are hoping these sensors can make for quicker investigations when reviewing footage.

“We have to kind of go back and watch video and you’re trying to find time frame and you may not know the exact time frame and so you’re watching a lengthy video,” Shireman said. “But this allows us to go right to the time where that sensor alerted us and we can watch video at that location.”

GCCS said they want to do everything they can to ensure they can protect their youth in a world that is turning more and more unsafe.

“It seems that we’re living in a world that’s a little more dangerous than what we lived in before and so the safety of the students is a top priority,” Shireman said.

GCCS said they hope to use funds from their Juul lawsuit to ensure they can get these sensors in all schools, including the new school they’re building.