Lawrence School District turning to AI to keep students safe

Published: Sep. 26, 2023 at 6:58 PM CDT
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LAWRENCE, Kan. (KCTV) - A local school district is turning to artificial intelligence to keep students safe.

It’ll search out threats students may face from others and even themselves.

The system, called Gaggle, has been implemented in over a thousand school districts nationwide. Now, it’ll act as a first line of defense in the Lawrence School District.

Here’s how it’ll work: the system will be monitoring all school-issued devices such as iPads and laptops. It’ll pick up on keywords such as suicide, kill, bomb, or fight - anything that would indicate harmful situations. When detected, that interaction will be flagged and staff will be alerted via email or phone call, depending on the severity. They will then communicate to social workers, guidance counselors, and any administrative staff to take action.

“Nine times out of 10 when a situation happens with a student there are keys and paths that have been taken that have been found later on. Why would we not be doing this?” said David Vignery, Lawrence School District Director of Technology

The school district is training on the system now and hopes to roll it out in the next 30 days.