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After Oxford shooting report, a call for stricter safety training requirements falters | #schoolsaftey


Michigan’s State Board of Education on Tuesday dismissed a school safety proposal calling for stricter training requirements for public school staff to help prevent gun violence, along with greater accountability for school employees and administrators for safety lapses.

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But members who opposed the resolution signaled that they’re still committed to taking steps to improve school safety and are open to taking up the proposal later.

The proposal came from Republican board member Nikki Snyder in response to the release last month of an independent report on the 2021 mass shooting at Oxford High School, where a 15-year-old killed four students and injured seven others. The report found multiple failures by school officials to take steps to prevent the killings.

Snyder’s proposed resolution called for state laws requiring all school administrators and educators to receive behavioral threat assessment and management training, with the Michigan Department of Education enforcing compliance. It also called for MDE to check current student codes of conduct to make sure they align with the federal policies on notifying school resource officers of students who may pose a threat of violence.

Snyder’s proposal also called for removing any liability shield for school personnel and administrators who failed to report potential threats.

“We need to lead now in making sure this is what we expect,” Snyder said during the board meeting.

The board voted 5-3 against adding the resolution to its agenda. Republican member Tom McMillan, and board President Pamela Pugh, a Democrat, voted with Snyder.

Other members of the board agreed with Snyder that school safety is an urgent priority for the board but said they believed the proposal needed more research and input from officials before the board could consider it.

“We definitely are not voting this down and saying we don’t want to do anything with it,” said board member Tiffany Tilley, a Democrat. “We are saying we need more time. We need to make sure there is capacity to get the program, as well as MDE’s capacity to audit.”

Tilley said she would also like to work with MDE to pass additional proactive resolutions on school safety.



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