(Harrisburg) -- More than $555,000 in state grants will allow 11 midstate school districts to cover the cost of placing police officers and school resource officers in their buildings.
The money comes from a $3.9 million pot, created through legislation signed into law last year to provide funding for programs to address school violence and security.
"The safety of our children is of the utmost concern to me, Senator (Joe) Scarnati and members of the General Assembly," Governor Corbett said in a statement. "This funding is the first step in providing schools with resources to ensure our students are learning in a safe and secure environment."
A total of 81 school districts and communities will receive up to
$60,000 for a school resource officer and up to $40,000 for a school police officer.
“Recent acts of violence have shown we clearly need to do everything within our ability to keep students and teachers safe in their learning environments,” Scarnati said. “These grants will provide financial assistance for school resource officers and school police officers while allowing for local decision making, in order to provide the greatest level of security possible at our schools.”
They are required to fund the officer’s position for at least two years.
If grant funding is available for the next school year, they will be eligible to receive 50 percent of the award for the current academic year without reapplying.
Communities awarded a grant, like Newville Borough, are required to assign school resource officers to schools within its borders, with the district's consent.
A total of 114 applications were received and reviewed based by the state.
Priority was given to schools and municipalities that employ officers who have completed additional training related to interaction with children and teenagers within a school setting.
The following midstate communities and school districts received grants:
Berwick Area School District --$38,484
Borough of Newville for the Big Spring School District -- $60,000
Chambersburg Area School District -- $36,000
Waynesboro Area School District -- $26,680
School District of Lancaster $ 60,000
Manheim Twp Police Department for the School District Of Lancaster -- $60,000
Northern Lebanon School District $60,000
Shamokin Area School District -- $39,344
SchuylkillIU 29 -- $60,000
Shenandoah Valley School Distirc -- $55,000
Northern York County Regional Police Department for York Dover Area School District -- $60,000
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