Sheriff applauds new legislation aimed at preventing school violence.

May 9, 2018

Oceana County Sheriff Craig Mast

Sheriff applauds new legislation aimed at preventing school violence.


HART — Oceana County Sheriff Mast today praised the introduction of new legislation aimed at preventing violence in the classroom.

The legislative package, led by State Rep. Aaron Miller (R-Sturgis), is modeled after a proposal announced by a coalition of law enforcement and education organizations in late March.

“The Michigan School Safety Reform Plan is based on clear, actionable strategies that are both effective and immediately achievable,” states a press release from the sheriff’s office.

“This legislation will make our schools a safer place for our children to learn and thrive,” said Sheriff Mast. “I’m very optimistic.”

The plan calls for a new state grant program for personnel, a grant program for safety infrastructure, and other reforms, including:

• More school resource officers—sheriffs and police—working in school facilities through a new state grant program;
• More school mental health professionals to identify problems early through the same new state grant program;
• Grants to ensure safer buildings for students and teachers; and
• Mandatory reporting of threats and graduated penalties to help prevent violence.

“All of our local schools have recently had a security concern — this legislation may help prevent any of these concerns from becoming a more serious threat.”

“We cannot do enough to ensure the safety of our children,” said Mast.

“School safety should always be about protecting children and providing for them a safe place to learn and grow,” said Rep. Miller, the package’s lead sponsor. “I’m proud that this legislation, along with other bills the legislature is working on, will make sure kids are better protected.”

The Michigan School Safety Reform Plan is made up of House Bills 5942, 5966, and 5967 is backed by: Michigan Sheriffs Association; Michigan Association of School Administrators; Michigan Association of School Boards; Michigan Association of School Psychologists; Michigan Association of School Social Workers; Michigan School Counselors Association; Michigan Association of Chiefs of Police; and Prosecuting Attorneys Association of Michigan.


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