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Genetec Unifies Security at Central Valley School District

In this testimonial, see how the Genetec Unified Security Platform solved security inefficiencies for Central Valley School District.
May 1, 2024

Central Valley School District serves 2,400 students and employs over 300 staff members. On any given day, there could be 5,000 people entering the school property. The district’s security footprint is similarly sprawling: 150 wireless door locks, 80 exterior wireless access doors, and 250 cameras cover four separate campuses.

Much like many other school districts, the IT department manages security technology — but with their limited staffing, this proved to be a challenge.

On a typical school day, there are constant security tasks that are intensively time-consuming. For example, a kid gets into an altercation and the principal requests footage of the incident. Now the security operator must sift through hours of video footage, locate the incident, and figure out how to extract and share a huge video file with relevant parties. Or perhaps, a door alarm goes off in another building. The security operator gets a call and then must walk over to investigate the cause, only to find out that it was likely a teacher who walked out of an alarmed exit. Once again, the time it requires to sift through camera footage and identify the errant teacher, simply to request that they don’t repeat the offense, just isn’t feasible.

Then there are the administrative tasks that are similarly time-consuming. A staff member leaves the district. Now the security operator must deactivate their access within each of the disparate security systems. Lastly, of course, security technology must also effectively manage crisis situations. In an emergency, every minute is precious. The quicker the information can be corralled and communicated to relevant parties, the quicker and more effective the incident response.

Overseeing the efficiency of all these systems is District technology director, Ed Eimiller. As Ed explains his decision to unify security under Genetec, “With limited IT staffing, the ability to execute all your security functions within a single control system makes all the sense in the world.”

The Genetec system unified the school’s access control, video management and active directory into a single platform. Tasks that required logging in and out of multiple systems are now seamless. Once a new staff member gets credentialed in Active Directory, they instantly have all the preset access permissions assigned to their staffing profile.

Mostly, Ed appreciates the mapping interface. Security operators can intuitively zoom into specific zones on the map, and capture access reports and camera footage. Plus, being a unified system, Genetec simplifies incident management and turn hours of evidence investigation into mere minutes of filter selections and verifications.

In the case of an emergency, Genetec allows for immediate lockdown or unlock states as needed, providing real-time updates on door statuses to support quick decision-making. With remote access capabilities, local first responders can see the same maps, door states, and cameras as the district's IT staff, ensuring a swift response during critical situations.

Ed is quick to attribute the success of the Genetec deployment to Central Valley’s longstanding partnership with DES. A complex solution can sound stellar on paper, but if it doesn’t ease the challenge on the ground, then it hasn’t solved the problem. DES’s ability to tailor the Genetec platform so that the district could take advantage of an enterprise solution while ensuring ease of operation was key to success — and the reason why Ed stands behind his two-decade relationship with DES.

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