CLOVIS, N.M. (KRQE) – A New Mexico school district is using artificial intelligence technology designed to get the jump on a school shooter. Clovis Municipal Schools installed the software at all of its 18 campuses five weeks ago. Officials say the move has gotten positive responses from the school community.

“We have 18 school sites, and that software is installed at all 18 of our school sites: 13 elementary, three middle schools, a freshman campus, and the high school, so it’s at 100% of our school campuses,” says Loran Hill, Clovis Municipal School District Senior Director of Operations.

Clovis Municipal School District recently partnered up with ZeroEyes – an artificial intelligence technology software installed in cameras that can recognize a gun. The technology works by detecting when someone is brandishing a gun within view of the camera.

“We all know that, unfortunately, school shootings and school incidents of this nature are not going away; but we initially heard about this from a neighboring school district,” says Hill. “If a gun is detected, and those have to be brandished, it’s not a concealed gun or weapon. If that gun is brandished within sight of a camera, then that alert is going to go to a ZeroEyes command center.”

If the staff at the command center determines the situation is a lethal threat, they will call 911 and notify the school in under five seconds – potentially giving people at the school more time to take action.

“So what it does is it gives us back time to prepare, run, hide, fight, and follow our protocols. So it doesn’t stop it, unfortunately, but, hopefully, gives us some precious time to get ourselves prepared,” says Hill.

To date, there have not been any incidents involving guns on Clovis school campuses; but with reports of shootings across the country, the district says they wanted to be prepared. The district used more than $300,000 from its federal CARES act money to buy the software. They have a four-year contract with the company.

“So far the feedback has been positive. So people are interested in another proactive approach, which we believe this is: pre-gun shot detection to help add a layer of security to our schools,” says Hill.

The district is also working on getting some additional security features that can detect concealed weapons. Even though the district only has a four-year contract, they plan to renew it as long as the technology continues to evolve.