SDTX groups among those awarded school violence grants
HOUSTON, TX -- Four Southern District of Texas (SDTX) school districts and a state agency area among those receiving Department of Justice (DOJ) grants to bolster school security and support first responders. DOJ announced the awards today, totaling more than $85.3 million, designed to educate and train students and faculty as well as support first responders who arrive on the scene of a school shooting or other violent incident.
“Creating a safe learning environment for our children is necessary,” said U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Patrick. “These grants will help local school districts and first responders train and create systems and programs that make our schools safer and better prepared for serious events.”
“These federal resources will help to prevent school violence and give our students the support they need to learn, grow and thrive,” said Attorney General William P. Barr. “By training faculty, students and first responders, and by improving school security measures, we can make schools and their communities safer.”
Among those in the SDTX receiving various grants include the McAllen, Humble, Pasadena and Mission Consolidated Independent School Districts (ISD), Humble ISD Police Department and Texas Department of Public Safety.
President Trump signed the STOP School Violence Act into law in March 2018, authorizing grants designed to improve threat assessments, train students and faculty to provide tips and leads, and prepare law enforcement officers and emergency professionals to respond to school shootings and other violent incidents.
The Office of Justice Program’s (OJP) Bureau of Justice Assistance and DOJ’s Office of Community Oriented Policing Services manage the programs and administer the grants, which include funds to:
• Develop school threat assessment teams and pursue technological solutions to improve
reporting of suspicious activity in and around schools;
• Implement or improve school safety measures, including coordination with law
enforcement, as well as the use of metal detectors, locks, lighting and other deterrent
• Train law enforcement to help deter student violence against others and themselves;
Improve notification to first responders through implementation of technology that
expedites emergency notifications;
• Develop and operate anonymous reporting systems to encourage safe reporting of
potential school threats;
• Train school officials to intervene when mentally ill individuals threaten school safety; and
• Provide training and technical assistance to schools and other awardees in helping implement these programs.
For more details about these individual award programs, as well as listings of individual 2019 awardees, visit https://go.usa.gov/xVJuV.