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Kennedale ISD receives school safety grant tied to an Uvalde-inspired bill | #schoolsaftey

Kennedale ISD near Fort Worth is among several school districts in Texas to receive federal funding to improve school safety.

Recent state laws require safety upgrades and armed security on every school campus. Kennedale ISD Superintendent Chad Gee said those requirements come with a price tag.

“In this day and age of unfunded safety mandates that are coming down to us all the time, we don’t have enough money,” he said. “And so this grant is huge for a district.”

The funding will go towards upgrading old security equipment and towards a new security operations building, Gee said, as well as upgraded cameras, electronic doors and a radio communications program.

The grant comes from the U.S. Department of Justice’s School Violence Prevention Program. A large portion of funding was authorized by the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, which is the first major gun safety law passed by Congress in nearly 30 years.

U.S. Sen. John Cornyn of Texas was among the lead negotiators of the bill, which President Joe Biden signed into law one month after the Uvalde school shooting.

“No parent should fear for the safety of their student when they drop them off at school, and no student or teacher should be afraid when they walk into the classroom,” Cornyn said in a statement announcing the grant funding. “In the aftermath of the tragedy in Uvalde, I’m grateful that meaningful solutions are being delivered through this funding to prevent violence in Texas schools.”

Lytle Independent School District near San Antonio and Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District also received grant funds through the federal School Violence Prevention program.

Juan Salinas II is a KERA news intern. Got a tip? Email Juan at [email protected]. You can follow Juan on X @4nsmiley

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