The Clark County School District relies on students speaking up when they see something dangerous but many students are students are afraid to come forward because their peers might find out.
That’s why CCSD is making use of “Safe Voice” which is an app that lets students and family make anonymous reports. The app is geared towards preventing more than just violence on campuses. It’s also a tool for students to report bullying or if they are suicidal or know someone who is.
And so far, hundreds of tips have poured in. Students at Clark High School started the new academic year with an assembly informing them about the Safe Voice app.
“It’s anonymous so you can like enter like someone being bullied, like if you see someone being bullied or like mistreated, or anything like anything at all, like they’re having family problems,” said student Gabby Menendez.
It’s an impersonal way to report threats, violence, bullying, and more.
“I think it’s a really good thing to do because some, like kids in our school, are like too embarrassed or like shy or like and don’t want to talk about it,” Menendez said.
Safe Voice is a statewide program.
Twelve dispatchers with the Department of Public Safety handle all reports and calls that come in. They, then contact the appropriate resources, if needed.
“I think it’s been working very, very well,” said Sgt. Kenji Okuma, DPS. “I think it’s exceeded our expectations.
He manages the Safe Voice communications center in Reno.
The program came online in early January.
Since then the state has received more than 3,100 tips, more than 2,700 in Clark County alone. Since the beginning of the school year, CCSD has received 419 tips which is an average of about 23 calls a day.
“When we decided it was time to start the program, it was one of those situations, we’re like OK it’s going be extremely busy or extremely slow and luckily it was extremely busy,” Sgt. Okuma said.
The current top five tips are for bullying, harassment, threat to student, depression, and cyberbullying. But those do change.
“It makes it easier than going to the office or something, like in person,” Menendez said.
And like with any anonymous program, Safe Voice does get fake tips. But so far this year, they only account for about three percent of the overall calls and reports they’ve received.