The nature of school security has seen whiplash in the last few years. Devastating weather events, school shootings, decaying infrastructure; they’re all accounting for an overhaul in how to properly secure a school. But better security doesn’t come easy. 90 percent of school district funds are allocated to salaries and benefits, which leaves a whopping 10 percent for everything else, including security personnel, technology and infrastructure remodeling.

Our guest on today’s podcast, Scott Himelstein, is an Education Market Consultant for Cenergistic, a company that provides experts and machine learning technology to reduce school costs by huge amounts. Himelstein’s experience in school security is deep; he was the former Deputy and Acting Secretary of Education for the state of California, where he served as chief policy advisor to Governor Schwarzenegger on K-12 and higher education. He’s also the president of his own company, PBK-REDI, which provides safety and security policy, facility assessment and training to K-12 and higher education institutions.

Himelstein joined us on the podcast to explore the back-end necessities of a functional school security system, from personnel training to real-time data monitoring. “You need to have the funds available and budgets to also have people watching,” Himelstein said. Since funds are tight, Cenergistic often steps in to help alleviate those costs; Himelstein explains how this is helping make safety a paramount part of school operations, even with limited budgets.

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