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Pass Security Blog

COVID – Is Your School Ready to Reopen Safely?

Schools Facing a COVID Resurgence

Is your school prepared for the coming school year? What safety measures have you taken to mitigate the spread of COVID? Updated security cameras an access control systems should be part of your plan.

With St. Louis and Illinois Metro area public and private schools scheduled to begin classes in a little more than a month, time is growing short for school administrators, teachers, local health officials and community leaders to finalize plans and procedures for the safe reopening of area schools in the face of a recent COVID resurgence.

With the Delta variant successfully creeping its way across the country, and responsible for the most recent spike in COVID cases, including in Missouri and Illinois, it is also a critical time for students and staff to get vaccinated.

This message has been made clear and there is no shortage of public messaging encouraging people to get vaccinated; local highways plastered with “Get Vaccinated” billboards, television and radio commercials remind us on a daily basis, and public service announcements and print ads do their part to convince us that getting vaccinated is our best and only sure-fire way to avoid contracting COVID.

Visit Vaccines.gov to find a COVID-19 vaccination location near you.

Missouri and Illinois Behind in COVID Vaccinations

elementary students walking to school with backpacksOnly 39.4% of Missourians have been fully vaccinated against COVID, according to the Mayo Clinic. And just 46.7% of Illinoisans. Also, children under 12 are still not eligible for the COVID vaccine. This leaves a huge percentage of unvaccinated students and teachers vulnerable to being exposed to classmates and colleagues carrying the virus.

To compound the problem, many people in small outlying Missouri and Illinois towns in rural counties are electing not to get vaccinated, some believing that the odds of them contracting the virus is much less because they are more isolated, and therefore safer, than their urban counterparts.

So, it should come as no great surprise that these rural counties are now setting records with a sharp increase in COVID cases, primarily due to the new Delta variant.

ESSER Money to the Rescue

By now it has been widely publicized that the federal government allocated more than $193 billion in ESSER (Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief) funding to K-12 schools across the country, including St. Louis area schools, intended to cover the cost of necessary resources that will be used to ensure a safe return to school for students, teachers and administrators, plus additional expenditures as determined by individual schools.

But did you know that ESSER and GEER (Governor’s Emergency Education Relief fund for private schools) can be used for updating electronic security systems in your school?

Now is the perfect opportunity to review your school’s electronic security system, particularly video surveillance camera and access control systems?

See this article for details about COVID prevention, ESSER funding and school security.

ESSER FAQ – How to Apply for ESSER School Funding

If you are not sure how to get started with your ESSER school funding application, view this government information document for full details about how to successfully submit your school’s ESSER funding application.

ESSER Funding Deadlines for Schools

Sept. 30, 2021: Last date the (state education) department can make awards.

Spring/ Summer 2021: The (state education) department makes reallocation awards.

Sept. 30, 2022: Last date SEA, LEA, or other subgrantee can obligate funds.

Learn about Contact Tracing for your school.

COVID Contact Tracing: How-to for Schools

Contact PASS Security if you have questions about how best to use your school’s ESSER funding to upgrade your school’s security camera surveillance or access control systems. 314-241-0422 or 618-394-1144 or Email Us.

Founded in 1969, PASS Security is headquartered in St. Louis, MO. and Fairview Heights, IL. We are a full-service electronic security systems integrator providing expertise in intrusion detection, video surveillanceaccess control systemsLIVE video monitoring for businesses, large commercial and enterprise operations. PASS also serves the residential sector with innovative SMART home automation products and services. We provide our customers with system design, engineering, installation, maintenance and monitoring services through our 24/7 local UL Listed Central Monitoring Station.