Report Calls For No Major School Safety Changes
August 14, 2013 — TheStatehouseFile.com
INDIANAPOLIS – A task force created by Gov. Mike Pence to study school safety issues has recommended more information sharing, additional training and modernized rules and procedures as part of a report released Tuesday.
In the report – the result of a comprehensive study that Pence called for last December after a Connecticut school massacre that left 20 elementary students dead – the school safety study group made three recommendations:
— The development of a website dedicated to centralizing, housing and maintaining information related to school safety
— Increased availability of training related to students or schools for all entities and people who interact with the agencies and divisions carrying out that training
— A regular review process for school security
The report said the recommendations, in combination with a new law implementing a secured school grant program, “represent a big step forward in improving the safety and security of Indiana’s schools.”
The grant program, created by a piece of legislation passed by the General Assembly earlier this year, allows schools with 1,000 or fewer students to apply for a matching grant of up to $30,000 and schools with more students to apply for a grant of up to $50,000.
Schools can then use that money to hire a resource officer or pay for other security measures.
The governor’s study group was chaired by Pence and comprised of education, mental health and public safety stakeholders.
In addition to the group’s study and report and the new law, state legislators are also preparing to undertake a study about staff carrying guns in schools
Pence said ensuring safety and security for schools in Indiana will remain “a top priority” in his administration.
He thanked the other members of the group for working “collaboratively and cohesively for the good of all students.”
“In the coming weeks and months, we will continue to work and pray for a safe and successful school year for Hoosiers across the state,” Pence said in a statement.