Messaging student warnings
September 23rd, 2007

The shootings last week at Delaware State University once again put the use of digital messaging by school authorities into the news. A report today includes this update:

A report by a Virginia state panel last month concluded that authorities there had waited too long to warn students of the attack because campus police lacked the authority to send a schoolwide alert.

In an effort to improve communications, the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia introduced two Web sites last month for students and staff to register their contact information.

Tulane University in New Orleans and Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, are also among schools that will send students and personnel information by phone, e-mail and instant messaging in cases of emergency.

The Virginia Tech attack was modern America’s worst mass shooting. Two students at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado, killed 13 people in a 1999 attack, the worst U.S. high school shooting.

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