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Monterey High Gets $24K Dispatch System For Criminal Justice Class

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Monterey High Gets $24K Dispatch System For Criminal Justice Class

Monterey High School’s criminal justice classes have a new tool for learning career skills, a dispatch system.

The system uses AI technology to create simulated 911 calls for students to respond to while training. Criminal Justice Teacher Tommy Johnson said the system helps train students for a well-paying career path in emergency services. Johnson said that the program trains students on how to behave as possibly the first calming influence to a panicked caller.

“The kids are really having to decipher the high-stress simulated calls,” Johnson said. “In trying to pick out the relevant information from the hysterical potential victims that would be dialing 911 because that’s the real-life scenarios that we’re able to give them.”

The school system purchased the $24,000 to increase career opportunities. Johnson said Putnam piloted the criminal justice program last year starting at Monterey, expanding it this year to Cookeville High School.

“Realistically, not every student that attends high school is going to attend a college or a university,” Johnson said. “And our school district as well as the state, they’ve pushed our CTE programs and really put a phenomenal amount of funding in them so we’re able to provide these kids with the opportunity to graduate and immediately join the workforce.”

Johnson said that the radio dispatch system trains students on handling calls anywhere from violent situations to a cat stuck in a tree. Johnson said that students are excited to use the system and he is excited to provide students with more options with what to do with their lives.

“If we can spend the time in the classrooms seeing who is capable of that multi-tasking and thinking that quick on their feet and being able to deal with the stressors in dealing with the call intake and dispatch positions can take, we’re really speeding up the hiring process,” Johnson said.

Johnson said that the program has also been launched in the face of an almost nationwide hiring crisis for emergency dispatchers. Johnson said that even if students don’t choose to pursue a career as a dispatcher, many gain a deeper respect for emergency services.


The post Monterey High Gets $24K Dispatch System For Criminal Justice Class appeared first on News Talk 94.1/AM 1600.