Texas Governor Greg Abbott Signs Alyssa’s Law, Silent Panic Alarms to Be Installed at All Schools

The law aims to address delayed law enforcement response due to lagging secondary communication between school staff and first responders.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott Signs Alyssa’s Law, Silent Panic Alarms to Be Installed at All Schools

Photo: Robert Biedermann, Adobe Stock

Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed Alyssa’s Law in a closed-door meeting Tuesday, requiring all schools in the state to install silent panic alarms that will alert law enforcement during an emergency, according to a media alert sent to Campus Safety from MakeOurSchoolsSafe.org. The systems must be installed by the start of the 2025-2026 school year.

In a bipartisan effort, the law was originally brought to Texas by State Rep. Shawn Thierry (D-Houston) and Senator Brandon Creighton (R). Texas lawmakers quickly moved the legislation through the Senate and the House chambers.  

The law aims to address delayed law enforcement response due to lagging secondary communication between teachers and administrators and first responders.

“We need better technology because those first three minutes of response mean everything,” said Creighton.

To fund the systems, school districts may apply for a state grant and get to choose what type of system to install, reports KXAN. Last June, Texas lawmakers transferred $105.5 million into the state budget for school safety. Approximately $17.1 million of that will be allotted to purchase the new systems.

“The last I checked, over 95% of the school districts in the state of Texas have already applied for this funding,” said Thierry.

The law, first passed in New Jersey in Feb. 2019, was created in memory of Alyssa Alhadeff, a New Jersey native who was one of 17 people killed in the 2018 mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. It was subsequently passed by Florida in June 2020, New York in June 2022, and Tennessee in May 2023.

The law has also been introduced by representatives in Nebraska, Arizona, Virginia, Oregon, and Georgia, and has been introduced at the federal level by Representative Roger Williams (R-Texas).

To learn more about the law, its requirements, and its impact on schools, check out this free webinar.

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