‘Raptor’ logs visitors to school

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AUSTINTOWN, Ohio – People planning to visit Austintown Local Schools should make sure they have their driver’s license  because they will need it as part of a new security system known as Raptor.

Superintendent Vince Colaluca said the new system was necessary as the district moved away from scattered neighborhood buildings to a main campus structure.

Visitors who plan to go beyond the main office must present a driver’s license or government I.D.  A police officer will scan the identification.

“All it does is take your name and date of birth. It doesn’t take any other information,” said Lt. Thomas Collins, Austintown Police Department. “It does not run your criminal history. All it does is compare your name and date of birth into the national sex offender database.”

If visitors are cleared, the officer will enter the reason and time of their visit. They will get a pass with all that information on it as well as their picture from their I.D. Once guests enter the halls, they must wear the visitor pass. That way, teachers and staff how who they are and where they’re going.

“It’s not real invasive. It’s there, it’s present, and it’s very quick. It’s very easy,” said board member Kathy Mock.

With safety a top priority, some parents love the new system. Ellen Difrancesco said there are a lot of new faces in the district and it helps to be able to identify people with the passes.

“That means there are a lot of people coming out and dropping their children, coming to pick kids up. Everybody doesn’t know who is a parent is and who isn’t,” she said.

When people leave the building, they must return to the main office, turn in their pass and receive their license.

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