Texas Senate Charts Its Own Course For School Safety- Reform Austin | #schoolsaftey

Rather than advancing House Bill 2, the proposed school safety legislation, the Senate has taken a distinctive route by opting to craft its own bill, named Senate Bill 5.This proposed measure is designed to allocate over $800 million over the next five years, establishing a robust school safety grant program.

The intended purpose is to fortify existing safety measures mandated by House Bill 3, acknowledging the concerns voiced by school districts about the financial strain imposed by unfunded mandates. Despite House Bill 2 securing unanimous approval in the House on Nov. 20, it awaits Senate action with a mere five days remaining in the session.

SB5, introduced by Sen. Joan Huffman, doubles the per student allotment from $10 per student to $20 and the amount per campus from $15,000 to $30,000.The bill also provides $400 million to fund the school safety grant program and $400 million to the allotment increase.

This financial infusion builds upon the substantial $1.4 billion previously allocated by the legislature for school safety during the regular session in May. Notably, $1.1 billion of that allocation was directed toward grants aimed at fortifying schools, while the remaining $300 million was earmarked for increasing the school safety allotment, as reported by KTSM. 

As the clock ticks down on the legislative session, both chambers grapple with the pressing need to address the concerns surrounding school safety, recognizing the paramount importance of this issue in the broader context of education in Texas.  The Senate convened at 11 a.m. on Friday and the House at 1 p.m.

*This is a developing story. 

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