Call blast system retained

Two years ago, the Warren County School District was forced to cut call blast communication capability from the budget.

After receiving complaints about the lack of communication ability during that school year, the district’s board of directors brought the capability back for the 2012-2013 school year. As a result of a vote held on Monday night, the district will maintain the service heading into the next school year.

“One Call Now is a Blast Communication System that would bring the district the functionality to send bulk phone calls, text messages and other emergency communication,” according to an executive summary prepared for Monday’s meeting. “This web-based solution also offers a parent portal to update contact information as well as providing 24/7/365 technical support for all district personnel. The proposal price is locked in for a term of 2 more years, with commitment dependent on annual budget approval.”

The service will cost the district $7,768.32. That breaks down to less than $2 per student.

While discussing the proposal, board member Mary Anne Paris raised the idea that people could be required to pay to register their phone numbers for use of the service.

Acting Superintendent Amy Stewart said that such a proposal had been considered and discussed over the last couple years but was something administration chose ultimately not to pursue. Stewart said that, if the cost was the concern, she could come up with many other ways to cut $7,000 from the budget instead of charging users.

The board unanimously approved the service.