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Indiana allocates more than $19 million to school safety

Last Updated on September 8, 2021 by Indiana Department of Homeland Security

The Indiana Secured School Safety Board has approved more than $19 million in matching state grant funds, marking a third consecutive year of record-breaking school safety investments.

“Hoosier students and staff should be able to go to school with the confidence and comfort of knowing they are safe and protected from harm. This program represents the state’s commitment to that mission,” said Gov. Eric J. Holcomb.

“With help from the General Assembly, we are able to support every school that applied with initiatives they have identified to make their schools safer,” Holcomb added.

The $19,058,808 million in awards allows the Board to fully fund all eligible, top-priority projects identified by 392 schools in their applications to the Secured School Safety Grant program (SSSG). Every applicant this year received either full or partial funding once award determinations were made.

Schools have received notification that their top priority requests were fully funded for all eligible items. The General Assembly allocated $19 million to the grant fund for each of the past three years.

“The Secured School Board is proud to maintain strong support for school safety, despite the challenges presented by the ongoing pandemic. This commitment identifies school safety as a top priority in Indiana, and these funds will have a direct impact on all staff and students across the state,” said Rusty Goodpaster, director of the Secured School Safety Board.

The Secured School Fund is administered by the Indiana Department of Homeland Security. Including the funds committed this year, the SSSG program will have distributed more than $110 million in state matching grants to schools since the program became law in 2013. All of these funds focus specifically on school safety. Visit the IDHS website for a full breakdown of SSSG awards.

Funding awarded to school corporations serving Cass County:
Lewis Cass- $33,000
Caston – $40,000
Pioneer – $43,000
Logansport – $100,000

The SSSG issues matching grants for eligible items and then schools match those funds at a certain level, either 25 percent, 50 percent or 100 percent. The match requirement is based on average daily membership of the school district, the total amount of the project or what the request covers.

Eligible items in the grant include funding for school resource officers (SROs) and law enforcement officers in schools; equipment and technology; active event warning systems (no matching requirement); firearms training for teachers and staff that choose to allow guns on school property; threat assessments and to implement a student and parent support services program.

The allocation of funds for FY22 include:

  • $13,440.1127.88 for School Resource Officers/law enforcement officers
  • $4,926,399.15 for equipment
  • $642,369.22 for student and parent support services programs
  • $43,678.47 for active event warning services
  • $6,233.33 for training

As of July 1, 2021, schools were required to have a completed threat assessment and a memorandum of understanding in place with a community mental health center (or employ a certified, licensed mental health professional) to be eligible for funding.

The Indiana School Safety Hub also provides schools with a wealth of resources, training opportunities and other information designed to give schools the tools they need to keep students and staff safe.

SOURCE: News release from Indiana Department of Homeland Security