HARRISBURG – As part of a major push in the Senate to protect schools and students from violence, two State Senators are introducing legislation that would establish uniform school safety standards throughout Pennsylvania.
State Senators Mike Regan and Wayne Langerholc Jr. are sponsoring legislation, which would require the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency to develop Comprehensive School Safety Assessment (CSSA) guidelines.
Guidelines would be developed in conjunction with the Department of Education, the Pennsylvania State Police, the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency and experts in school safety.
Under the legislation, school districts would be required to undertake a CSSA in each of its school buildings. Based on the results and recommendations from the CSSA, school districts will qualify for dedicated grants to assist in the implementation of the recommendation of the CSSA.
“The intent of the CSSA is to provide a uniform approach to evaluating current security measures in every school building,” Regan said.
“The goal is to identify specific strategies to make schools better prepared and more secure for children and staff, and be proactive, not reactive with respect to the safety of our children in school.”
“While many school districts have taken significant and worthwhile security measures to prevent tragedy from striking, it is critical that we strive to ensure there is a consistent level of safety for every child entering a public school in Pennsylvania,” Langerholc added.
“Security and emergency preparedness assessments can provide schools with an independent appraisal of safety measures already in place, and recommendations for enhancing those measures with improvements at the building and district levels.”