Six Local Districts to Make Schools Safer With $ 140k Investment, Blake Says

HARRISBURG, Feb. 25, 2014 – To better protect students throughout Northeast Pennsylvania, state Sen. John Blake today said six districts will share in more than $140,000 from the commonwealth’s Safe Schools Initiative.

The Safe Schools Targeted Grants help school administrators create and execute plans designed to reduce and prevent violence. One-hundred-ten districts throughout Pennsylvania received a total of $2.6 million this year under the program.

“Recent history has shown us that tragedies can happen in our schools,” Sen. Blake said. “It is unfortunate that such circumstances must occupy our attention, but it is very good news that we have resources to invest in our schools to make them safer for our students, teachers, and administrators.

“School is a place for learning; not fear. I am confident that districts in NEPA receiving Safe Schools grants will use them well to ensure students can stay focused on building knowledge and choosing careers for a better future in Pennsylvania,” he said.

NEPA districts receiving Safe Schools Targeted Grants include Pocono Mountain ($25,000), Monroe Career & Technology Institute ($25,000), Pittston Area ($25,000), Lakeland ($24,996), Valley View ($22,800), and Scranton ($18,990).

Grants were awarded following a competitive application process administered by the state Department of Education’s Office for Safe Schools.

Districts may spend the money to address school violence through some of the following:

  •  Conflict resolution or dispute management,
  •  Peer helpers programs,
  •  Risk assessment or violence prevention curricula,
  •  Classroom management,
  •  Student codes of conduct,
  •  Development and implementation of research-based violence prevention programs that address risk factors,  including bullying, and
  •  Comprehensive, district-wide school safety and violence prevention plans.

“The Safe Schools Targeted Grants will help districts provide peace-of-mind through proactive measures proven to work,” Blake said.