Skyguard Provides the First Service in the UK to Help Special Needs Pupils Travel Independently

By Skyguard Ltd, PRNE
Sunday, February 20, 2011

EPSOM, England, February 21, 2011 - Skyguard has been working with the City of Edinburgh Council to develop a
pioneering new initiative which has led to a special needs pupil becoming the
first in the UK to travel to school on his own, by using Skyguard's GEMshield
personal safety alarm.

Craig Nibloe, from Pilrig Park School, can now travel independently
without the need for school transport, which allows him to have the
opportunity to go to college to complete further education courses.

The City of Edinburgh Council has become the first local authority in the
UK to train special needs pupils to use a personal safety service. Skyguard's
service is more commonly used by Councils and businesses to protect lone
workers and 'at-risk' individuals, as well as Police forces who issue the
devices to the highly vulnerable such as domestic violence victims. The
success of the initiative could lead to other special needs schools in the UK
using the service in conjunction with their Local Authority. Traditionally,
special needs pupils are taught self travel by teachers who have to accompany
them over an average eight week period as they travel from their homes to

However, thanks to the Skyguard service, the need for staff to accompany
them is eliminated and training is completed a lot quicker, with teachers
able to train more pupils.

The pupil carries the pocket-sized device whilst the teacher is able to
rely on Skyguard's online customer portal to pinpoint the pupil's location.
The device can also be used as mobile phone allowing pupil and teacher to
call each other, for example if the bus is running late. An SOS button
provides vital backup in an emergency, allowing trained controllers at
Skyguard's 24/7 Incident Management Centre to immediately locate the pupil,
talk to him if it's safe to do so, and follow their personalised escalation
procedures such as contacting their school, family members or the emergency
services as appropriate. The pupil's relevant information such as medical
history and emergency contacts can be updated in real-time, 24/7, using
Skyguard's online customer portal.

Craig said: "I always wanted to get the bus to school by myself but
wasn't able to. I'm really pleased I can now do that on my own and go to

Cllr Paul Edie, Health and Social Care and Housing Leader for Edinburgh,
said: "This Council has really embraced this new technology, which is
transforming people's lives and making a real difference to them."

Will Murray, Skyguard's Marketing Director adds, "We are delighted our
service is being used by Edinburgh Council in such an innovative way. Not
only does this improve the lives of special needs pupils by giving them
greater independence, but it also allows Councils to save valuable resources
and use their budget more effectively in helping special needs children in
the areas they need it most."

About Skyguard

In 2003 Skyguard began a 3 year market research and technology design
programme, sourcing the right devices and developing the best possible
software for its requirements. Following a GBP3m investment in 2006, the
service infrastructure was developed. Extensive field trials with the police
and other organisations followed and, in 2008 a new management team and
investors were engaged, taking the company to the next level. A further GBP2
was invested in 2009 to create new devices, software, and the
construction of a dedicated state-of-the-art Incident Management Centre in

For further information contact: Will Murray, Marketing Director,
Skyguard Ltd, Tel: +44(0)208-786-3305, Email:

For further information contact: Will Murray, Marketing Director, Skyguard Ltd, Tel: +44(0)208-786-3305, Email: will.murray at

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