Matzie: County schools districts to receive nearly $300,000 in safety grants

HARRISBURG, Oct. 4 – Beaver and Allegheny County school districts have been awarded $297,664 in school safety grants, according to state Rep. Rob Matzie, D-Beaver/Allegheny.

Matzie said the districts will use the grants for various resources, including implementing safety programs and hiring school resource or police officers.

“No kid should be afraid to go to school. We need to do all we can to make our schools safer. This money is a good start,” Matzie said. “There are steps we can take – trained officers we can put in place, programs we can implement – that we know work. But there is a financial cost. This state funding takes some of that burden off of local taxpayers. Most importantly, it puts us on the right track to making our schools, and our kids, as safe as possible.”

Matzie said the funding includes the following:

  • A $20,000 2018-19 program grant to Hopewell Area School District.

  • A $60,000 2018-19 school resource officer grant and a $30,000 2017-18 school resource officer grant to Central Valley School District.

  • A $60,000 2018-19 school resource officer grant to Hopewell Area School District.

  • A $47,664 2018-19 school resource officer grant to New Sewickley Township Police Department.

  • A $60,000 2018-19 school resource officer grant to Rochester Area School District.

  • A $20,000 2017-18 school police officer grant to Quaker Valley School District.

The grants are awarded through the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s Safe Schools Targeted Grants program. A total of $8.4 million in competitive grants has been awarded to prevent and reduce violent incidents in schools, purchase safety and security-related equipment and provide for the training and compensation of school resource and police officers.

“Parents must feel safe sending their kids to school, and students deserve a safe and healthy environment where they can grow, learn and succeed,” said state Department of Education Secretary Pedro A. Rivera. “This targeted funding helps schools secure the resources they need to provide a safe environment and builds on the Wolf Administration’s commitment to students and teachers across the commonwealth.”

More information on the specific awardees and amounts is available here.

The PDE program is separate from the new $60 million School Safety and Security Grant program established this year and administered by the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency.