What looks like a small toaster is now providing an extra layer of security at Milton School District buildings.

This week, the district began testing Raptor ID, a visitor identification management system. The system will be fully implemented Jan. 22, said Jerry Schuetz, director of administrative operations.

The Raptor ID device scans photo IDs and cross-references visitors’ names and dates of birth against the national sex offender registry, Schuetz said.

Visitors to Milton facilities will be required to show a photo ID with a date of birth upon entrance. Visitors without IDs can give their names and dates of birth to an administrative assistant, who will manually enter the information into the system, Schuetz said.

The system will replace the district’s paper sign-in log and will only be used during school hours, Schuetz said.

Those who pass the security check will be given a personalized visitor’s badge and allowed into the school.

If the system flags a concern, Schuetz and the building’s administrator will be sent text messages with further information. Administrators will then determine how to handle the visitor.

One solution would be to escort the visitor through the building. Nobody on the sex-offender registry would be allowed to be with children unsupervised, Schuetz said.

The system does not check for active warrants or other criminal history, Schuetz said.

Raptor ID was funded by a state Department of Justice grant awarded to the district this summer. Initial costs for installation and equipment total $27,500. The system includes an annual licensing cost of $4,000, which will be paid out of the district’s technology budget in future years, Schuetz said.

Schuetz and administrative assistant Kim Krause first heard about the system at a conference. Schuetz said the system is user friendly and was the least expensive of available security systems.

The Edgerton and Stoughton school districts already use Raptor ID. Schuetz said parents have already expressed thanks for the additional security measure.

All district buildings require visitors to buzz in at the doors for access during school hours and will continue to do so. The district will continue mandatory background checks for volunteers before they are allowed to work, Schuetz said.

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