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Federal Education Report Reveals Major School Safety Budget Cuts
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National School Safety and Security Services -- Ken Trump National School Safety and Security Services -- Ken Trump
Cleveland , OH
Wednesday, August 18, 2010

 
Eliminated federal school safety program and local budget cuts raise back-to-school safety questions for parents, expert says

[CLEVELAND] --- A new U.S Department of Education report shows the elimination of a major federal school safety grant program, combined with local education budget cuts, has created a 'perfect storm' climate for the upheaval of school violence prevention and security programs, according to Kenneth S. Trump, a national school safety expert.

"School safety administrators can't rob Peter to pay Paul because Peter's budget has also been cut. The drug prevention coordinator or school security director can't ask the superintendent to replace thousands of lost federal school safety dollars with money from other programs because local district budgets are being shaved to the bare bone, too," said Trump, of Cleveland-based National School Safety and Security Services.

A June, 2010, internal report by the U.S. Department of Education found schools nationwide are reducing and eliminating student drug prevention programs, reducing behavior intervention specialists, cutting school security and school-based police officers, and not providing professional development to staff on prevention, security, and crisis preparedness best practices.

"The elimination of several significant funding sources (e.g., Title IV, Safe and Drug-Free Schools) from both national and local budgets has also resulted in the elimination of entire programs that provided a framework for school safety and prevention efforts," according to the report produced by The Center for School Preparedness of the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools.

The $295 million state grant component of the decade-old federal Safe and Drug Free Schools Program was eliminated from the FY 2010 budget by Congress and the Obama Administration, costing many schools their primary funds marked specifically for school safety as of July 1st, 2010. The program was a formula grant drug and violence prevention program which passed money through state education departments to local school districts nationwide. The Department is instead currently piloting a smaller $27 million grant targeted to state education departments for "bullying" and "school climate," and is proposing $400 million in national competitive grants which will serve fewer school districts and be skewed to bullying and climate if approved by Congress in the proposed FY2011 budget.

Trump authored the cover story article on "Keeping Schools Safe During Tight Budget Times" for the upcoming September issue of District Administration Magazine, a leading education industry publication for school leaders. A companion article by Kurt Eisele-Dyrli entitled "School Safety Gets the Ax" highlights the findings from the Education Department report. Both articles, along with a copy of the original federal survey report, can be downloaded from http://www.schoolsecurity.org/trends/school-security-budget-cuts.html and at the District Administration Magazine site (www.districtadministration.com). 

"School security and prevention programs tend to be the first cuts to be put on the chopping block by far too many legislators and local school boards. They're being penny-wise and pound-foolish," Trump said.

Parents need to check with their local school districts to see what prevention and security programs are being cut as safety cuts can often be hidden from the public eye when discussions center on hot issues such as teacher layoffs, reduction in sports programs, and cutbacks in school transportation, according to Trump. He says there are also many low-cost and no-cost school safety and preparedness measures school leaders should still be pursuing even when there are cuts to school safety funding.

Trump is a four-time invited Congressional expert witness on school safety, security and emergency preparedness issues. He has authored two books and over 60 professional articles on K-12 school security and emergency preparedness issues. Trump has appeared on all cable and network news channels, and is quoted regularly as a school safety expert in national daily newspapers and professional publications. He also blogs at www.schoolsecurityblog.com.

Expert Background and Contact Information:

Kenneth S. Trump, MPA

President

National School Safety and Security Services

Cleveland, Ohio

216-251-3067

For full biographical see

www.schoolsecurity.org/school-safety-experts/trump.html

For related articles see: www.schoolsecurityblog.com  

Kenneth S. Trump, M.P.A., is the President of National School Safety and Security Services, a Cleveland-based national firm specializing in school security and emergency preparedness training and consulting. Ken served as a school safety officer, investigator, and youth gang unit supervisor for the Cleveland City Schools' safety division, and as a suburban Cleveland school security director and assistant gang task force director.He has authored two books and over 60 articles on school security and crisis issues. As one of the leading U.S. school safety experts, Ken has 25 years experience in the school safety profession and has worked with school and public safety officials from all 50 states. He is one of the most widely quoted school safety experts, appearing on all national news networks and cable TV and in top market newspapers. Ken is a four-time invited Congressional witness testifying on school safety and emergency preparedness issues. For more background, see www.schoolsecurity.org/school-safety-experts/trump.html.  Trump also blogs at www.schoolsecurityblog.com  
 
Kenneth S. Trump, M.P.A.
President
National School Safety and Security Services
Cleveland, OH
216-251-3067
 
 
 
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