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LONDONDERRY, N.H. (AP) — New Hampshire schools and police departments are getting better connected thanks to a statewide school safety initiative.

Gov. Maggie Hassan joined the Londonderry Police Department, school officials and the director of the state's Homeland Security and Emergency Management office on Tuesday to launch the initiative, which is aimed at improving school emergency notification systems.

Six schools in Londonderry and 14 police cruisers are getting new software that will allow school computers to connect to and alert police dispatchers without going through the Emergency 911 system. Officials say the new system reduce response times in an emergency, sending an alert to the law enforcement officers closest to the school.

The initiative is also underway in Lincoln, and approximately 20 additional communities across the state have applied for grants.

"Ensuring public safety, especially for our schools and our young people, is state government's most important responsibility," Hassan said. "This enhanced emergency notification system will improve school security, providing a real-time school threat alert solution that notifies dispatch and the closest law enforcement officers."

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