HARRISBURG – School safety remains a priority in the 2019-2020 state spending plan that was signed into law, according to PA Senator Doug Mastriano (R-33).
The budget continues the School Safety and Security Grant Program, created last year in response to nationwide concerns.
As part of the state’s $33.9 billion budget, $71 million is allocated for school security grants.
“The program’s first year was a huge success, so investing in a second year of the initiative shows that lawmakers are committed to keeping our children safe,” said Mastriano. “Children are our most precious commodity. Protecting our young people and teachers is something that must happen and it must happen now.”
According to Mastriano, Senate Republicans restored the $15 million that the Governor cut from the School Safety and Security Grant Program, which is administered by the PA Commission on Crime & Delinquency.
Under the initiative, school districts may apply for a grant for a wide range of purposes, including safety and security assessments, security-related technology, training, counselors, police officers and anti-violence programming.
Additionally, lawmakers increased a Safe Schools initiative under the Dept. of Education by 10 percent. Last year, every school district that applied received a grant of $25,000, including all public schools in the 33rd Senate District.
More information regarding the School Safety and Security Grant Program can be found online at www.pccd.pa.gov under the School Safety and Security heading.
Lawmakers also passed several measures that focus on the behavioral health of students, address trauma-informed education, and bolster existing school safety laws. The new legislation requires schools to create a threat assessment team to ensure students who could potentially pose a safety risk are able to receive necessary evaluations and treatment.
CONTACT: Scot Andrew Pitzer; 717.787.4651; firstname.lastname@example.org