Schools receive $100K grant

Published 10:16 am Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Charlotte County Public Schools (CCPS) are updating their security equipment following a $100,000 grant awarded by Gov. Terry McAuliffe who awarded $6 million to protect students and teachers in 104 school divisions and three regional educational programs throughout the state.

Nancy Leonard

According to a press release, the grants will pay for video monitoring systems, metal detectors, classroom locks, electronic-access controls, visitor-identification systems, direct communications links between schools and law enforcement agencies and other security upgrades in 545 schools and other instructional facilities.

According to division Superintendent Dr. Nancy Leonard, the CCPS application for the grant included increased security measures for all schools in the division.

“Our strongest emphasis was on (Randolph-Henry High School),” Leonard said. “Each school had differing and varying needs and we customized our application to the individual needs of the schools.”

She said overall the division included increased camera surveillance both outside and inside all of our schools, improved communication technologies for our schools during crises events and improved door entry technologies.

“School safety is imperative to providing an environment where students can learn, grow and thrive,” said McAuliffe in the release. “These grants will provide our school administrators with the resources they need to keep their students and teachers safe so they can concentrate on providing a world class education and preparing for success in the new Virginia economy.”

According to the release, The School Security Equipment Grants program was established by the 2013 General Assembly in the aftermath of the Dec. 14, 2012, mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut.

“The criteria for making the awards — developed by the Virginia Department of Education and the state Department of Criminal Justice Services — gives priority to schools most in need of modern security equipment, schools with relatively high numbers of offenses, schools with equipment needs identified by a school security audit, and schools in divisions least able to afford security upgrades,” officials said in the release.