Alert system by TES gives special school new level of communications

Paul Tustin 08 April 2022

A tailored communication system designed by specialists TES Communication Solutions is enabling swift alarm communications for a special school with five departments located over three sites.

Using Bluetooth receivers around the sites, the system can pick up and track each person wearing a lanyard badge which allows the user to raise an alert for assistance on a digital floor plan viewed on a computer at Briarwood School, Bristol.

When used in conjunction with a digital radio system, the alert can also be sent as a text message to another radio, and is compatible with smart phones which means the system can extend beyond the Briarwood estate.

Briarwood is a Special School for pupils with severe and profound learning difficulties and complex needs catering across all ages across three locations with a Good Provider rating by Ofsted.

Alistair Mackintosh, Primary Head of School at Briarwood, said: “We teach children with severe learning difficulties, some of them unaware of the safety needs around them. Our staff are often managing incidents involving a high level of medical and behavioural issues.

This presents significant challenges in terms of communication across such a complex set of buildings. With the support of the team from TES, we have developed an approach that allows class teams to be able to contact a Response Team if they need extra support.

The combination of handsets and alerts has enabled staff to ask for help and communicate with others across the school to ensure safety and wellbeing remain paramount.

Steve Smith, managing director of TES, said: “This was a particularly challenging project because of the complexity of the site and the nature of the school. We worked closely with the team at Briarwood who are to be applauded for their commitment and planning around the challenges they face on a daily basis.

Through a safe, well managed and bespoke school environment incorporating cutting edge technology, Briarwood School aims to meet its values of Enjoy, Engage and Learn, ensuring high standards of achievement.