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Schools to seek grant of up to $500,000 for safety

During the Monday, April 10, 2023, work session, Richard Herrin, School Safety Director, asked the Cook County Board of Education’s permission to apply for a federal grant of up to $500,000 for school security and safety improvements.

The U.S. Department of Justice’s COPS (Community Oriented Policing Services) program administers the School Violence Prevention Program (SVPP) grant, which has a competitive application process. The Students, Teachers, and Officers Preventing School Violence Act (STOP School Violence Act of 2018) gave the COPS Office authority to provide awards directly to States, unites of local governments, or Indian Tribes to improve security at schools and on school grounds in the jurisdiction of the grantee through evidence-based school safety programs and technology. The application deadline is May 17. Up to $73 million in funding is available for FY23 SVPP. Each award is three years (36 months) in duration for a maximum federal share of $500,000 per award. There is a local cash match (cost share) requirement of at least 25 percent.

Herrin said the School System Technology Department will be partnering with Motorola to write the grant application. 

He said the grant would fund improvements in video surveillance, access control measures, two-way radio communications within the buildings and outside the buildings, and more.

During the April 10 regular session, Board Member Jeff Taylor made a motion, seconded by Board Member Brenda Moore, to apply for the COPS Grant. All voted in favor. 

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