Governor DeWine Outlines Latest Statewide School Safety Efforts … – Governor Mike DeWine

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(COLUMBUS, Ohio) — Ohio Governor Mike DeWine today signed House Bill 99 and provided an update on new and ongoing school safety initiatives in Ohio.
“Our goal is to continue to help our public and private schools get the tools they need to protect our children,” said Governor DeWine. “Working together, we have come a long way to improve school safety in Ohio over the last decade, and we must continue this progress. We have an obligation to do everything we can every single day to try and protect our kids.”
House Bill 99, sponsored by Thomas Hall (R-Madison Township), does the following:
Separately from House Bill 99, Governor DeWine has also instructed that the OSSC expand its number of school safety liaison positions from five to 16. The 16 OSSC liaisons will also be based within the ODE school safety support team regions and will work with schools to implement a comprehensive school safety framework by assisting them to secure school safety grant funding, conduct physical vulnerability assessments, and evaluate emotional safety and cyber safety. In total, 28 new employees (17 safety & crisis staff/11 liaison staff) will be added to the OSSC in the coming months.
Governor DeWine has also worked with the Ohio General Assembly to secure $100 million in funding to help K-12 public, private, and parochial schools pay for physical safety and security upgrades. The funding, which is part of the new capital budget, will be awarded to schools as part of Governor DeWine’s existing K-12 School Safety Grant Program. The funding will pay for physical safety upgrades in and around school buildings such as visitor badging systems, school radio systems, exterior lights, security training, door locking systems, and other physical safety needs.
To help schools meet the requirements of House Bill 123 of the 133rd Ohio General Assembly, Governor DeWine has also directed the OSSC and Ohio Department of Education to offer free, evidence-based threat assessment training for Ohio schools. This specialized training, which focuses on identifying behavioral issues and assessing threats of violence, will first be provided to many of Ohio’s Educational Service Centers whose staff will then teach these guidelines to educators, support staff, school resource officers, and other school leaders across the state. House Bill 123 requires that all public schools serving grades 6-12 have a threat assessment team in place by March 24, 2023.
The above actions support Governor DeWine’s ongoing work to protect school students and staff through violent crime reduction strategies and enhanced mental health services, including: 
Strengthening Ohio’s Mental Health Workforce 
Encouraging Student Wellness 
Enhancing School Security 
 Reducing Violent Crime 
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