The Michigan Legislature gave final approval on Tuesday to a bill to create a school safety office within the Michigan State Police, said sponsor Sen. Mike Nofs.

Under Senate Bill 982, the new Office of School Safety would work in conjunction with the Michigan Department of Education to better facilitate cooperation between schools and local law enforcement agencies.

“We need to make sure our dedicated educators and first responders are working together to identify the best practices for protecting Michigan children,” said Nofs, R-Battle Creek. “This new office will make sure all agencies across the state have access to the most current resources and training they need to respond to security issues.”

Nofs said the office would help create safety plans, train school staff on what to do in case of an emergency and provide a structure to distribute and solicit school safety grant funds.

Nofs’ legislation is part of a comprehensive package of bills approved by the Legislature that is designed to help keep students safe.

The package includes measures that would require schools to conduct a safety assessment with local law enforcement by the 2019-20 school year — and at least every two years thereafter; create the School Safety Commission within the state police and require the commission to establish school safety metrics and review them regularly; require schools to designate a school safety liaison to work with the commission; and establish other significant safety measures.

SB 982 and the other bills in the school safety plan now head to the governor to be signed into law.


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