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News Release - School Safety Working Group announces public engagement opportunities
April 10, 2023
School Safety Working Group announces public engagement opportunities
DENVER -- In the wake of recent school shootings, school swatting incidents, and the ongoing discussion of how to keep our communities and students and teachers safe, the School Safety Working Group is inviting the public to engage in its work to improve coordination and access to state programs and resources designed to make schools safer for students, educators and families.
“There is a fundamental, critical and urgent need to ensure that our schools are safe places to learn and that our students, educators and families feel safe in our schools,” said Education Commissioner Katy Anthes. “It's going to take all of us working together to address not just the mechanics of school safety but to dig in and tackle the root causes of violence in our schools. CDE is doing a great deal of work to support schools to build safe and inclusive cultures. We need to ensure these efforts are connected to the critical work at other state agencies that are combating gun violence and providing crisis and mental health support. The School Safety Working Group will serve as a critical connector to ensure state services are connected and to make sure they are accessible to schools across the state.”
The School Safety Working Group was established by legislation in 2020 and 2022. The working group aims to coordinate efforts across state agencies to address challenges with school safety and increase access to grants and resources on school safety.
“The School Safety Working Group brings stakeholders from state and local government and the community to the table to talk about interagency coordination and data sharing with the ultimate goal of making schools safer,” said Colorado Department of Public Safety Executive Director Stan Hilkey, who chairs the working group. “School safety is a big topic and we’re looking for more voices to inform our work through subgroup participation.”
Given what our communities have been facing lately, the work of this group must be elevated and voices from our communities should be involved. The working group will establish smaller subgroups to dig into specific areas, which may include behavioral and mental health services in schools, suicide prevention, and safety and security measures among others.
As the subgroups are being created, volunteers can send their names, contact information and a brief description of their particular interest in school safety to the group facilitator, Confluence Policy and Strategy Group, at email@example.com.