School safety: A look at the new security system coming to Rio Rancho Public Schools
RIO RANCHO, N.M. — School security within Rio Rancho Public Schools is evolving.
The Evolv Security System was launched at Cleveland and Independence High School this year.
Students come in through the administration building or the student parking lot, put their Chromebooks on a conveyor belt, and walk through weapon detectors.
“We went with the conveyor system for two reasons, one, it eliminated the need for students to lift their Chromebooks over their heads, but it also helps us regulate student flow as they go through the scanner,” said Sal Maniachi, RRPS Safety and Security executive director.
Maniachi says from there, if something is detected, they have security guards search backpacks.
During the 2023-24 school year, the district says 15 weapons were confiscated on RRPS campuses. However, since the system launched, no weapons have been found on Cleveland’s campus.
“The students come in, there could be an item, let’s say a three-ring binder with a metal spine,” Maniachi said. “The system may detect that as being a sharp-edged weapon, so it is going to alert.”
Students and families have reacted positively to the change. Soon, all of the campuses within RRPS will get the upgrade.
“It’s working really well here,” Maniachi said. “The staff has accepted it positively and they like working with it. We want to do it at all our schools. We are going to be doing a big redesign at Rio Rancho High School and part of that redesign is making the system work in that environment.”