Select Committee Dealing with School Safety Holds First MeetingPosted: Updated:
The new state House Select Committee on School Safety held its first meeting on Thursday, April 26, in Richmond.
Delegates David Toscano, Rob Bell, and Steve Landes are among the lawmakers on the panel tasked with finding ways to make schools safer. The group was formed following a deadly school shooting in Parkland, Florida.
The group will not take up gun laws, but it will recommend legislation for the general assembly to consider during its next session.
On Thursday, the group dealt with formalities and received updates on what research has already been done on this topic at the state level.
Press Release from Delegate Steve Landes:
RICHMOND, VA – Del. R. Steven Landes, R-Weyers Cave, Chairman of the House Education Committee, participated in today’s inaugural meeting of the House Select Committee on School Safety and was appointed Chairman of the Subcommittee on Student Behavior and Intervention. The Select Committee met to organize and receive presentations on the current law in Virginia as it relates to school safety.
“Today’s meeting was a great first step in our work to enhance school security and keep our teachers and students safe. I am confident we will have concrete recommendations for the General Assembly to consider in the 2019 Session as a result of the work we began today,” said Landes. “I look forward to visiting schools in the 25th District beginning next week, and working together with my colleagues in the House to review state and local policies on school safety, and learn about best practices we can share with the General Assembly.”
Speaker Kirk Cox, R-Colonial Heights, formed this committee to look at ways to make our public schools safer and more secure. The Select Committee on School Safety will prioritize efforts to strengthen school security. The Committee’s work will be limited to strengthening emergency preparedness, hardening school security infrastructure, implementing security best practices, deploying additional security personnel, providing additional behavioral health resources for students, and developing prevention protocols at primary and secondary institutions across the Commonwealth.
The House of Delegates has led the effort in recent years to invest in school safety, providing over $30 million in funding to hire school resource officers and invest in security infrastructure, as well as passing legislation to allow local schools to hire retired law enforcement to protect our children.
Landes represents the 25th House District, which includes parts of Albemarle, Augusta, and Rockingham Counties. Landes is currently serving his twelfth term in the Virginia House of Delegates. Visit SteveLandes.com for additional information.
Visit SchoolSafety.Virginia.gov for additional information on the House Select Committee on School Safety.