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Mitchell County high school students design threat reporting app

A local high school is setting out to make a difference in the community and you can access it through the palm of your hand on your smartphone.

Posted: Oct 2, 2018 10:49 PM
Updated: Oct 3, 2018 6:46 AM

ST. ANSGAR, Iowa – A local high school is setting out to make a difference in the community and you can access it through the palm of your hand on your smartphone.

It is all through an app called Mitchell County Threat Report.

“The sheriff of Mitchell County came to me with an idea,” said teacher Devin Schwiesow.

The idea calls for a new plan of action after recent school shootings from across the country.

“Obviously, that’s something we deal with in the schools today is the possibility of an intruder or something – someone that can come in and harm kids,” added Schwiesow.

So students in the Mac-Lab course at St. Ansgar took to the drawing board.

“Early development is a lot of whiteboard sketching, and then when you get into the actual coding and development of the app, it kind of pieces together quite quickly,” said student Christian Eckard.

After hours of work, the final result – an app for your smartphone. It will ask you a series of questions such as: who it involves? What sort of threat? Where it could happen? Once all of that is filled out, you can submit a report and it will go directly to the sheriff or school officials.

But the students and teacher say that with perfecting the app came with a lot trial and error.

“We had I think a total of 46 trials until we finally got the trial we thought was ready to publish,” said Schwiesow.

However, the app is not just a great resource for students – it is available to all Mitchell County residents.

“It can be for adults in the county, it is supposed to be for everyone in the county,” says Eckard.

The hope is to expand the reach of the app making it accessible for more people.

“(The) ultimate hope is for the app is that it will be dispersed throughout the county, and perhaps all of Iowa, and maybe the rest of the United States,” said Eckard.

Students from St. Ansgar, Osage, and Riceville collaborated on the project.

The app is available for iPhone and Android devices.

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