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[s43] Promoting Safety in Hoosier Schools
Start Date: 8/27/2013Start Time: 12:00 AM
End Date: 8/27/2013End Time: 11:59 PM
Entry Description

With schools back in session, I thought it would be a good time to discuss Indiana’s efforts to promote safety in our classrooms. In 2013, the Indiana General Assembly passed important policies to better protect our children, from the time they get on the bus each morning until they’re home for the night.


One of the most important topics we discussed last session was school security. After the tragedy in Newtown, Conn. this past December, we had to ask ourselves: What can we do to make sure this never happens in Indiana?


I believe part of the answer to that question is in Senate Enrolled Act 1, a bill I co-authored this session. The bill established the Indiana Secured Schools Grant Fund to provide matching grants for schools to improve security. Schools can use the grant to hire school resource officers, conduct threat assessments and expedite contact with first responders.


School corporations can apply for these grants until Sept. 30. I want to encourage all school corporations in our area to apply for the grant to ensure the safety of all Hoosier children.


Of course safely transporting students to and from school is also important. That’s why Indiana recently passed Senate Enrolled Act 421, which requires the State School Bus Committee to meet several times a year to examine ways we can improve bus safety.


The Indiana State Police has also developed a tool to make school bus inspections more transparent and easier for parents to access. Families can visit and click on “School Bus Inspection Program” to view bus inspection reports online. These reports provide data about a bus’ violations, current safety status and previous inspection history.


As the fall sports season approaches, it’s paramount that young athletes have the best preparation and protection. This summer, a legislative study committee is looking into ways to educate coaches and parents about safety concerns and concussion symptoms, ensuring Hoosier athletes are safe to perform on the field. 


The Indiana General Assembly also took steps to promote safety for our younger children who attend daycare facilities. 


To achieve that goal, the legislature passed House Enrolled Act 1494 requiring all adults operating or working for a child care facility to undergo a national background check. HEA 1494 makes our background check law more comprehensive, casting a wider net to catch those coming from other states with questionable criminal records.


As we head toward the 2014 legislative session, my colleagues and I will vigilantly assess all the ways Hoosier students and teachers can be protected. In this way, we can help guarantee a safe, secure scholastic environment in which young people and their educators can thrive.



Contact Information:
Name: Brady Hagerty
Phone: 317-232-9425
Entry Type:
Press Release
Entry Category:
  • Announcements
  • Category:
  • Government
  • Agency Name
    Senate Republican Caucus

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