Learn About Emergencies With Patch!

Alerting Childcare When There’s a Nearby Emergency

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PAWS is a program in Leon County which helps more than 150 licensed childcare facilities stay informed of active threats in their area through messages right from the 911 dispatch center. It is a 24-hour alert system designed by the CDA and operated in coordination with law enforcement.

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PAWS sends text and phone messages in real-time to alert childcare facilities within 0.5 miles of an emergency situation. This system was developed in coordination with From Cradle to College Foundation, Inc., which launched the Preschool Emergency Alert Response Learning System (PEARLS).

How The PAWS Program Works:

  • Law Enforcement discovers a threat and responds
  • Law Enforcement tells the CDA about the ongoing threat
  • Law Enforcement asks a CDA supervisor to alert Leon County Schools and participating childcare facilities in the area
  • Messages go out via phone or text from the 911 dispatch center to all participating facilities near the emergency

More Information

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PEARLS made one of the first daycare alert systems in Florida, and the CDA’s 24-hour alert system exceeds its high standards. PEARLS offers training for local childcare providers. For details, call Marie O’Connell at (941) 779-6149 or send an email to

To learn more about PEARLS and the From Cradle to College Foundation, Inc., please visit their website.

Go to From Cradle to College Foundation's website