FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WPTA21)- One local company is making it their mission to help students and faculty feel more safe when they return back to school.
President of Highmark TechSystems, Debbie Parrott and VP of Sales Matt Andrews say as parents themselves it was important for them to make this product.
"All of us at Highmark are parents and we're all working parents and I think we all share the same concerns," Parrott said.
"I've got two children that are going to be third graders as well as a daughter who's going into her freshman year," Andrews said.
They're helping schools out by making plastic personal safety shields that students and faculty can use to provide an extra layer of safety when they're back in the classroom.
"So this is a very lightweight shield a student can carry around or faculty and deploy it right at their desk or their lunch table or wherever they're going," Andrews said.
Andrews and Parrott explained the process of building these shields from start to finish.
"It starts with going out to the schools and understanding their needs...and then we make some sketches of their needs and then our design department actually draws the product that programs the machine...the guys load the router with the material it cuts the material," Andrews said.
Schools can choose from a number of designs. Depending on the age of the students some designs will work better than others.
"Not all schools are created equal and so as much as you'd like to come up with one standard that works for all they all do have custom needs," Parrott said.
The shields are made from durable materials that won't chip or crack if a student drops it.
"You also have the opportunity to use a dry erase marker on them you can put a sticker on them you can label them you can really personalize them," Parrott said.
Both say they hope Highmark plays a small part in making the school year a bit safer for their kids and so many others.
"I'd love to think that Highmark's contribution just in terms of being able to provide a solution that is needed right now and we've been able to pivot our business very quickly in order to accommodate these needs," Parrott said.
For more information on how to purchase the shields head to their website.