Carney signs school safety legislation into law

Gov. John Carney recently signed the Delaware School Safety & Security Fund into law — a bipartisan piece of school safety legislation that was passed unanimously by members of the General Assembly. The legislation, funded with $5 million in the state’s capital budget, establishes a School Safety & Security Fund to provide resources for projects intended to increase security in Delaware public schools.

“All Delaware students and educators deserve to feel safe when they go to school in the morning,” said Carney. “We work with school districts and charter schools each year to update and test school safety plans statewide. But we should take all appropriate steps to create a safe climate at school. That’s why this legislation, and this new school safety fund, is so important. I want to thank members of the General Assembly from both sides of the aisle for stepping up and leading on this extremely important issue.”

“Today, we took a positive step toward helping to make our schools safer,” said state House Minority Leader Danny Short. “This legislation will allow necessary improvements to be done to our traditional public and charter schools to protect students, teachers and staff from intruders.”

“Giving schools the support to invest in safety infrastructure is a matter of common sense,” said state Sen. Stephanie Hansen. “It’s also important to give schools the flexibility to tailor those investments to their needs. It’s important that we follow up with proactive steps, like counseling resources, but HB 335 provides local schools with those resources at a time when the safety of our schools, students and faculty is on everyone’s mind. I’m glad to have supported this legislation in the Senate and am grateful to Gov. Carney for signing it.”

“Five percent of the Delaware high school students surveyed in the Youth Risk Behavior Survey reported that in an average month they did not go to school for as many as six days due to fear of being unsafe in school,” said Brian Moore, School Climate & Discipline Program manager at the Delaware Department of Education. “Our job is to make sure that every public school student in Delaware can learn in a safe, secure and supportive classroom.”

“This grant is a perfect example of how in Delaware our schools, state agencies, families and elected officials can come together quickly and efficiently to focus on finding solutions to challenges — in this case, collaborating to discover ways to make our classrooms safer and more secure so that our children can maximize learning opportunities,” said Secretary Susan Bunting of the Delaware Department of Education.

“While NCC Vo-Tech is honored to host the bill signing at St. Georges Technical High School, school districts and charter schools across the state collectively appreciate HB 335,” said Vicki Gehrt, Superintendent of New Castle County Vocational Technical School District.