When teachers and school administrators need training on how to stop
bullying, improve conflict resolution methods and even make bus rides
less combative, they turn to Silverton-based SafeSchools
, where they find online training they can complete any time, anywhere.
Brian Taylor says SafeSchools' programs helps school districts lower
administrative and insurance costs. In turn, it has helped Taylor's
company thrive in an era of economic uncertainty."It's been a good row
of growth," says Taylor, who, along with a partner, bought the company
Business has grown 25 percent every year, he says. Already in 2011,
revenues are up 46 percent. It's gotten to the point that he's having
trouble keeping his website up to date: Instead of the 175 online
courses listed, SafeSchools now has more than 200. Instead of the 2,500
school districts across the country that are or have been customers, the
number has rocketed to better than 3,000, Taylor says.
SafeSchools also started a SafeColleges division, geared mainly to community colleges.
What the company does is this: It looks for issues and areas that
schools or colleges need work on to enhance safety. It contracts with
experts in the field to provide a training program, then develops that
program video into a course tailored to specific jobs in the school –
because a teacher has different needs than a bus driver. It augments the
videos with various multi-media tools, including tests and questions to
ensure than those watching have absorbed the material.
The courses are in a variety of areas, ranging from nutrition to
security to human resources. Specific topics include: bus behavior and
discipline, bullying recognition and response, food-borne illnesses,
first aid and conflict management between staff, students and parents.
Most of the courses last 20 to 30 minutes, and many are in Spanish and
Taylor said the company's software program allows people to watch on
their own time and at their own pace, and keeps a record of those who
have completed the course and understand the subject matter.
"It's designed around the fact that people can do their training at any time and in any place," Taylor says.
SafeSchools sells the videos directly to school districts, or contracts
with insurance companies that in turn work with the districts.
"We've been able to show that if you use our programs, you can drive down the severity of claims by 50 percent," Taylor says.
By Paul Long