N.C. Department of Public Instruction Awards $35 Million in School Safety Grants

The Center for Safer Schools funding will be used for safety equipment, training, and services for students in crisis.

N.C. Department of Public Instruction Awards $35 Million in School Safety Grants

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RALEIGH, N.C. — The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction’s Center for Safer Schools (CFSS) announced Wednesday it has awarded $35 million in safety grants to 233 school districts and charter schools.

The funding, which is part of the School Safety Grant Program, will be used for safety equipment, training, and services for students in crisis. Safety equipment covered by the grant includes cameras, vape detectors, radios, and weapons detection systems, according to a news release. Training can include professional development for school leaders to assist students who are experiencing anxiety, trauma, or conduct issues, and school-based mental health services.

“Nothing is more important than making our schools safer and more secure, and these grants will continue to play a vital role,” State Superintendent Catherine Truitt said in the release. “This funding will help improve school security in many ways, including updating technology and training to prevent future emergencies.”

Onslow County was the largest grant recipient at $700,000. The next largest were Cabarrus, Charlotte-Mecklenburg, Johnston, Wake, and Winston-Salem/Forsyth counties, which were awarded $500,000 each. A full list of public school districts that were awarded the funding can be found here. Each application was thoroughly reviewed, said CFSS Executive Director Karen Fairley.

CFSS staff focuses on school climate, school discipline, and emergency preparedness concerns for North Carolina’s public K-12 schools, says its website.

“It is part of the Center’s mandate and mission to give public school units the tools they need to help keep their schools safer – that includes grant funding,” Fairley continued. “We thank the General Assembly for its generous appropriation that enables us to support North Carolina public schools.”

State lawmakers and the Department of Public Instruction launched the School Safety Grant Program in 2018. Since then, more than $150 million in grants have been awarded, the News-Observer reports. In Oct. 2022, $33 million was awarded for hiring and training SROs for the 2022-23 school year.

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Amy is Campus Safety’s Executive Editor. Prior to joining the editorial team in 2017, she worked in both events and digital marketing.

Amy has many close relatives and friends who are teachers, motivating her to learn and share as much as she can about campus security. She has a minor in education and has worked with children in several capacities, further deepening her passion for keeping students safe.

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