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Frequently Asked Questions

If you’re new to SIREN or looking to enhance your school safety measures, we’ve got you covered. This page will help you learn more about how SIREN works and how it can help prevent violence in your school and community. 

faq about siren school safety
  • What is a black box algorithm? Do your platforms use them?
    A black box algorithm refers to an algorithm or a technology that doesn't provide an explanation of how it works. Our platforms do not use black box algorithms, and Psynetix believes such technology is unethical. In short, our platforms automate a complex human analysis process that has been performed manually for decades. When an organization purchases our platform(s), Psynetix trains its users on how to manually perform the analysis that is automatically performed by the software. This ensures the software is well understood by its users and that they know why and how analysis is performed.
  • What would trigger someone to be evaluated using SIREN?
    SIREN only analyzes individuals whose concerning behavior has become observable and reportable. This means the individual must have been observed expressing threatening or dangerous thoughts or acting out in some way. Once that behavior has been seen, it must also be reported. There must be an official record, confidential or not, which predicates the need for analysis or investigation.
  • What type of information will a typical SIREN report provide?
    The SIREN report, called a Psyfolio, consists of several sections. First, typical biographical information, like name and date of birth, is displayed. Next, the Psyfolio details any academic, professional, or disciplinary history about the individual. Also included is information about positive behaviors displayed and any awards or special recognition earned by the individual. Finally, the individual is evaluated against a database of five million positive and negative behaviors, which have been classified into sixteen dimensions. This process generates recommendations for evaluations and follow-ups if required.
  • What happens after a SIREN report is generated?
    What happens next is a matter of individual school, workplace, or department policy. Once the final Psyfolio is generated and actionable recommendations are offered, Psynetix suggests the Psyfolio be reviewed by a leadership committee that monitors individuals of concern. In academic settings, the student’s current teacher and counselor should be part of this group. The committee should then decide on a course of action that follows their policy.
  • How exactly does SIREN prevent violence? What types of actions does SIREN recommend?
    SIREN seeks to prevent violence by providing users with a proactive threat assessment tool. Upon completing a Psyfolio, users can form different action plans based on an individual’s unique results. Common recommendations include implementing comprehensive safety plans, further questioning or interviewing, conflict resolution strategies, referrals for psychiatric evaluation and counseling, completing regular follow-ups with the individual, and, where warranted, disciplinary action or arrest. Actions may vary per school, workplace, or department policy.
  • Do your platforms factor in race or ethnicity in any way?
    No. Our platforms do not contain any questions, fields, or forms which ask for an individual's race or ethnicity.
  • Can other entities access our students' information?
    Psynetix does not send student information to any outside agency, nor is student information held at Psynetix Laboratories. In fact, if a school's behavioral forensic specialist makes an error and deletes a file, Psynetix cannot reproduce that file because the company never has a copy.
  • My child's school uses SIREN. How do I know if they have been evaluated using this platform?
    Your child's school determines parental notification guidelines according to their governing policy. Psynetix is not able to view which students have been evaluated and thus cannot inform parents.
  • My child was evaluated by SIREN. How do I obtain a copy of the report?
    Psynetix cannot provide a copy of your child's report as Psynetix does not collect or store student information. As a parent, you can likely obtain a copy of your child's report by contacting your child's school. Psynetix values the privacy and safety of students, school personnel, and parents and advocates for transparency between school personnel and parents in matters concerning their children.
  • I am against the idea of my child being evaluated using SIREN. How do I stop their school from doing so?
    It is unlikely you can prevent your child’s school from initiating a SIREN assessment if the school decides that is the appropriate course of action. However, it is essential to note that an assessment will not be conducted unless your child is engaging in concerning behaviors or communications that were observed and reported to school staff or faculty. Completing a SIREN assessment may enable a child to receive necessary care, attention, and intervention from school personnel, counselors, and family members.
  • I am worried about a particular child's behavior but their school does not use SIREN. Can an individual purchase one-time access?
    Unfortunately, no. SIREN may only be accessed by trained Behavioral Forensic Analysts and Investigators.
  • What information are you collecting about my child and how are you obtaining it?
    Psynetix does not collect or store any student information and cannot view, access, or reproduce any reports or student information entered by users. When a school faculty member completes a report in the software, they do so by answering questions about behaviors that were observed and reported.
  • How will SIREN keep our students, teachers and staff safer?
    SIREN is a proactive early warning system rather than a reactive response system. Most campus security approaches focus exclusively on increasing physical security measures, conducting active shooter drills, and enacting lockdown procedures. While these are valuable measures that can and do save lives, Psynetix aims to prevent attacks from occurring in the first place – long before fortification or use of force are needed. Users can often initiate the proactive measures suggested by SIREN months before any disciplinary or other official action is required.
  • I am concerned about a particular student's behavior but my school does not use SIREN. Can an individual teacher or counselor purchase access?
    Unfortunately, no. SIREN may only be accessed by trained Behavioral Forensic Analysts and Investigators.
  • Will law enforcement be contacted?
    Law enforcement intervention is a matter of school and public policy according to a school's jurisdiction. Psynetix does not send student information to any outside agency.
  • If a student transfers to a different school, will the information follow them?
    That decision is made at the school administrator level. Psynetix Laboratories does not have a copy of the file and cannot send it anywhere.
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