We Have Enough Before Examples

Within the last week we were confronted with three more harsh reminders of what can happen before an organization implements an Effective Notification System. First, newly released documents indicate that the Penn State child sex abuse scandal cover-up started in 1976, not 1994. Then, after cover-ups that even Hollywood would find hard to script, the Los Angeles Unified School District agreed to pay $88M for child molestation at two elementary schools not long after paying $140M for horrors at another – elementary school.

The third incident is closer to home. Easton High School substitute teacher Kelly Aldinger was caught by police having sex with a student. The Morning Call reports that the sexual relationship started last fall when the boy was 16 and that they had met several years ago when Aldinger taught at Easton Middle School.

It didn’t take long to learn that Ms. Aldinger had passed a comprehensive background check and that some students and teachers had known of the  relationship since the beginning of the school year.

The Easton Area School District has a Safety Hotline to report such matters:

“Anyone desiring to anonymously report a safety concern or hazard which may jeopardize the safety of others, the Easton Area School District, its students or employees, should direct his or her correspondence to the respective building Principal or the Office of the Superintendent if applicable. See below for the respective contact information or call the district’s anonymous safety hotline number at (###) ###-#### extension ###### to leave a message.” (Emphasis mine)

Students know of the Hotline but as teenagers do about many serious matters, make a joke of it. “Mailing a letter?!” “Calling the  principal’s or superintendent’s office, think how that call would go…”   We were also told that the district’s safety hotline number tracked caller numbers and location, identified voices and, that it didn’t work. I called it several times and if you’re not careful you do get stuck in a loop. But even if you reach the line it doesn’t engender notifications.

But the students’ distain, and any we may have, is misguided. The Easton Area School District really does care for its students and their notification program at least meets all compliance requirements. (Full disclosure, I was a student teacher at Easton High School when I was a senior at Lafayette College.) The bad news is that science, what is, and software engineering, what can be, are just catching up with serious issue notifications (and feedback and suggestions).

And that’s also the good news. Now we can do something about it, effectively, and inexpensively.  

What can be covered up, will be. Automatically logging and archiving all notifications on a secure server eliminates the possibility of a cover up. No one at Penn State or the LAUSD would have participated in a cover-up if they knew there was a record of the matter that could not be deleted.

And in order to learn of serious issues in the first place, notifications must be securely and confidentially processed, when and how people want: 24/7, via any computer, mobile optimized tablet or smartphone, app, text or telephone.

1st Notice does all of this and more and right now we’re the only provider than does. We make our research freely available to competitors and welcome competition but in the meantime, every single organization should have a 1st Notice account. It exceeds all compliance requirements, is most likely to prevent and the first to detect criminal activity and is less expensive than all hotline services. It’s right, it’s performance justified and it’s the law. 1st Notice pacakges also measurably improve engagement and optimize performance.

Parents and grandparents, aunts and uncles and friends, don’t let the children in your life associate with an organization that doesn’t have 1st Notice. You may be able to protect your children, but anything that happens to another child in your community affects all of the children. Make the after examples the norm.

1st Notice will not allow cost to be a barrier to an organization having an Effective Notiification System. AskUs@1stNotice.com to learn about our assistance programs.