WASHINGTON, D.C. — Last week U.S. Senator Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) sponsored the bipartisan Students, Teachers, and Officers Preventing (STOP) School Violence Act of 2018, legislation that authorizes investments in school security improvements, and early intervention and prevention programs to deter school violence before it happens.
“This bipartisan legislation would help students feel and remain safer at school and would empower teachers to identify signs of potential violence before it occurs,” said Sen. Moran. “Developing anonymous reporting systems, training school security officers and strengthening school infrastructure are all concrete and commonsense ways we can better protect our children – and the feedback I’ve heard from school officials across Kansas has been that these reforms would make a real difference.”
Following tragedies like Columbine, Virginia Tech, Sandy Hook and now Parkland, the federal government has funded short-term school safety initiatives focused on crisis response, active shooters and physical infrastructure. The STOP School Violence Act builds on these initiatives and promotes sustained strategies to STOP violence in our schools before it happens. Our students, educators and local law enforcement need the tools and support to take proactive and continuous steps toward improving school safety and security.
This legislation authorizes the Department of Justice to make grants for the purposes of training students, school personnel and law enforcement to identify signs of violence and intervene to prevent people from hurting themselves or others. In addition to prevention efforts, the legislation funds evidence-based technology and equipment to improve school security and prevent school violence. This includes the development of anonymous reporting systems and commonsense security infrastructure improvements. The legislation also provides funds for school threat assessment and crisis intervention teams to help schools intake and triage threats before tragedy strikes.
The Students, Teachers, and Officers Preventing (STOP) School Violence Act of 2018 is supported by Sandy Hook Promise, Secure Schools Alliance, the National Association of Secondary School Principals and the Federal Law Endorsement Officers Association.
Items to Note:
· The Student, Teachers, and Officers Preventing School Violence Act of 2018, or the STOP School Violence Act, reauthorizes and amends the 2001-2009 bipartisan Secure Our Schools Act to offer Department of Justice grants to states to help our schools implement proven, evidence-based programs and technologies that STOP school violence before it happens.
· The bill would authorize $75 million for FY 2018, and $100 million annually for the next ten years, which may be partially offset from a DOJ research program called the Comprehensive School Safety Initiative.