Montgomery ISD combats student vaping with new HALO smart sensors in bathrooms at Montgomery and Lake Creek high schools

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MONTGOMERY, TX (KTRK) — When Montgomery’s ISD students return to school Thursday, they may find it easier to get caught vaping.

The district has added more vape sensors on high school campuses.

A total of 23 sensors were installed in six bathrooms at Montgomery and Lake Creek high schools, the district said.

They are designed to monitor air quality, THC, vaping, carbon dioxide, and device aggression and tampering.

Earlier this summer, the Montgomery ISD Board of Trustees approved approximately $49,000 to purchase the HALO intelligent sensors.

The sensors cost about $2,000 each for installation, activation, and licensing

Sensors were installed as a pilot program at Lake Creek High School back in April.

“Vaping, vapes are a tremendous challenge in schools across Texas and across the country. You can’t solve a problem by ignoring it and so we need to identify and make our schools a place where it’s very difficult for students to engage in vaping,” said Superintendent Heath Morrison. “We want to make it challenging; we want to make it daunting; but if we get caught we want to take the appropriate consequences for the student, but even more we want to give them the help they need to dissuade them from the practice and behavior that’s not positive.”

Should a sensor issue an alert, Davis said, vice principals will receive a text message and email that an incident has occurred. Cameras positioned outside the restrooms allow administrators to identify who may be vaping if a student isn’t immediately identified, she said.

To make students aware that restrooms are being monitored, Executive Director of Technology Amanda Davis said signs will be posted at each restroom.