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LA Unified Rolls Out School Safety Apps To Encourage Community Reporting

Students walk on a street past a school police officer.
A Los Angeles School Safety officer stands guard as students arrive at a school in Los Angeles.
(Ringo Chiu
Getty Images)
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Officials in the Los Angeles Unified School District are rolling out a series of apps and app updates designed to address school safety and other parent concerns.

What are the apps?

  • The Los Angeles Schools Anonymous Reporting app, or LASAR. It will help students, families, and community members alert school police about possible safety issues.
  • An Emergency Alert app that gives school staff members the ability to alert school police of an active shooter.
  • An updated Parent Portal will give parents information on their children’s school, including cafeteria options, bus routes, attendance, graduation progress and report cards.
  • An updated Service Management Tool for IT issues.

How does the LASAR app work? The app is for non-emergency school related issues where users select one of eight categories, like a school shooting threat, drug use, or vandalism. They can upload a photo or video of an incident, and the app also tracks their location. Those reports go directly to the L.A. School Police Department (LASPD), where a commander decides what to do with them and whether to deploy any officers, mental health counselors, etc.

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School safety is an issue: After an LAUSD student died from a fentanyl overdose in September, her mother filed a lawsuit alleging negligence on the part of the district. But the LAUSD board also heard from many students this week that the district should be reducing police presence, not encouraging it.

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