Senator Schiavoni Introduces School Safety Legislation
Legislation allocates additional state funds to be used for safety improvements
 
 

Boardman-Today, Senator Joe Schiavoni (D-Boardman) joined Boardman Schools Superintendent Frank Lazzerri and Boardman schools personnel at Market Street Elementary to introduce legislation to provide Ohio school districts with additional funds for increased safety and security for students. 

The legislation would appropriate an additional $35 million dollars in both fiscal years 2014 and 2015 to be used for school safety projects.   Funding distribution would be based on a district’s enrollment, with four tiers ranging from $25,000 for small districts, to $100,000 for large districts.  

To maintain accountability, school districts would be required to submit an application to the Ohio Department of Education (ODE) on how they will use the funds to increase school safety.  An ODE approval process will then consider and approve applications that meet predetermined criteria.  Applications would be non-competitive, so any approved district safety project would receive funds. 

“As we saw in Boardman earlier this week, it is very difficult for school districts to pass levies.” Senator Schiavoni said.  “That is why I believe the state should be investing more in our schools, instead of relying on the local taxpayer to cover the costs in keeping kids safe.”

Since the funds would be used at a school district’s discretion, requests ranging from the need to hire an additional school resource officer or counselor, to new door locks or security cameras would be deemed eligible for additional dollars under the legislation. 

“After listening to dozens of school and safety professionals as a member of the Senate School Safety committee, I came to the conclusion that there are many ways to make improvements,” said Senator Schiavoni.  “That is why I think providing schools with the flexibility to decide what they need, within reason, is the best approach. This legislation does just that.”

Senator Schiavoni’s legislation will be formally introduced in the Ohio Senate next week.  

 
 
 
  
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