President Obama made school safety propositions part of his new initiative to reduce gun violence. Schools across the nation are now brainstorming additional safety components to their existing plans, but where will the funding come from and is it enough?
The president's proposals include a new comprehensive school safety initiative, which if passed by Congress, would allow schools across the nation a total 150 million dollars, allowing schools to hire up to 1,000 new resource officers and counselors.
Roles the proposal said can be filled through this year's U.S. Department of Justice office of Community Oriented Policing Services.
"We've administered programs identical to these in the past. Our COPS and schools program, which we administered through 2000 and 2005 was a very popular successful program at about 6,400 resource officers throughout the country," said Corey Ray with COPS.
If this proposal passes, the next question is how will that $150 million be divided?
According to the Texas Education Agency, the state has the second largest school enrollment in the nation.
So, does that mean Texas would receive a larger slice of the $150 million?
Let us say, hypothetically, it is divided equally among the nation. If you take $150 million and divide it by 50 for every state and then by 1, 227 (which is the number of school districts including charters in the state) that leaves roughly 2,445 dollars per district in the State of Texas.
Roy Knight, Lufkin ISD's superintendent, said that just will not be enough.
"When you do the math that really quantifies the commitment to sincere school safety," Knight said.
Tyler Independent School District said any bit helps.
"Well, what we would do should extra should extra dollars become available, we would look at the most efficient ways to utilize that money. Specifically, we would look at adding additional security and police officers for the campuses, adding cameras, updating monitoring systems, and just making sure that we were up to date," said Dawn Parnell with TISD.
COPS said should their agency end up allocating the funds, each school district will be responsible for applying for either a resource officer, safety equipment or whatever they feel is necessary to ensure the safety of their students, faculty and staff.
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