The South Milwaukee School District is getting $131,505 from the state for safety upgrades at its schools.
The funding — to be used in a variety of ways across the district — was announced on Monday, as part of the Wisconsin Department of Justice’s continued rollout of the School Safety Grant program. Attorney General Brad Schimel and the Department of Justice announced 52 grants in all, totaling more than $3.5 million.
South Milwaukee Police Chief William Jessup was part of the press conference, reflecting the strong support the police department has provided in both assessing the needs of each school and applying for the funds. This was a very effective partnership, and I’m glad we could help in securing this important grant.
From the school district …
Dr. Rita Olson, School Board President Carol Dufek and Police Chief Bill Jessup were on hand for the official signing of the award by the Department of Justice to the School District of South Milwaukee of $131,505 which will be used for school safety upgrades throughout the School District. The grant was developed in conjunction with the South Milwaukee Police Department and will strengthen our school safety and security.
In general the grant provides for the following:
- Shatter resistant film on glass panels
- Door key security upgrades
- Electronic door controls
- Limiting public access to our students throughout the school day
- External door replacement
- Increased signage
- Doors on all classrooms at Blakewood Elementary
The funding received from the State will address some upgrades, however there is more to be done as best practices in school safety and security evolves. The District is moving forward with the hire of a Security and Safety Program Manager and more investment is expected. The safety of our students is and will always be a top priority of the District.
From the state’s press release …
Grant dollars are divided into two categories: the Primary School Safety Grant and Advanced School Safety Grant. DOJ’s Primary School Safety Grants focus on baseline improvements to schools, including door locks and hardening school entryways. The Advanced School Safety Grants are awarded to schools that have met minimum security thresholds. In addition to making upgrades to school buildings, one of the School Safety Grant prerequisites is providing all full-time teachers, aides, counselors, and administrators with a minimum of three hours combined training in Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) and Trauma Informed Care/Trauma Sensitive Schools (TIC/TSS) before the end of the 2018-2019 school year; or demonstrate that staff has already received such training. …
Over the past three months, since 2017 Wisconsin Act 143 was signed into law, the Wisconsin Department of Justice (DOJ) has consulted with numerous stakeholders in the fields of education, security, law enforcement, and mental health. These specialists, listed at the end of this press release, worked with DOJ’s own security experts to develop how the School Safety Grant Initiative will create sustainable improvements in Wisconsin schools.
“Our $100 million School Safety Plan is helping schools across Wisconsin become more secure,” said Governor Walker. “It is important we all continue to work together to make sure every teacher, parent, and student feels safe in our schools.”
Grant applicants are required to partner with law enforcement agencies to ensure that proposed expenditures, visitor protocols, and school safety plans will be effective and provide students with the safest learning environment possible.