Davisson: Putting the safety of Hoosier students and educators first

Posted by: Abigail Campbell and Sydney Livingston  | Friday, January 11, 2019 9:00 am

 Students and teachers deserve a safe place to learn and work. Enhancing these efforts became clear after Indiana experienced two school shootings in 2018. This session, we are prioritizing school safety and strengthen our commitment to Hoosier students and teachers.

 Since 2013, Indiana appropriated $53 million in School Safety Matching Grants to hire resource officers, fund new technology and conduct threat assessments. This session, legislation I support would implement recommendations from Gov. Eric Holcomb’s recent school safety report to improve physical security and mental health resources for students. House Bill 1004 would make the School Safety Matching Grant more accessible to smaller schools who wish to utilize the program.

This legislation would ensure schools in Indiana have at least one active shooter drill each semester, and every school would have a designated school safety specialist. Additionally, it would give students grades 9 through 12 the opportunity to participate in a mental health survey administered by the State Department of Health.

 To further support the safety of our students, I authored legislation to give schools the ability to provide support to students who need it. House Bill 1250 would add social workers and mental health counselors to the list of established programs eligible to receive funding under the School Safety Matching Grants so schools could offer resources to students seeking help.

Adding these programs and giving schools the ability to enhance mental health resources for students could help prevent future tragedies in our state. To follow these school safety bills and more, watch committee meetings, and view session live, visit iga.in.gov. I can also be contacted at 317-232-9769 or h73@iga.in.gov if you have any questions or input on issues being debate at the Statehouse.

-30-

State Rep. Steve Davisson (R-Salem) represents House District 73,

Washington County, and portions of Orange, Lawrence, Jackson, Clark and Harrison counties. 

Click here to download a high-resolution photo.