The Department of Justice has awarded nearly $126 million in funding to advance school safety under the STOP School Violence Act to 153 schools across the country. One Indiana school district, the Hanover Community School Corporation, plans to upgrade school safety with their $350,150 grant.

The grant, awarded by the Office of Justice Programs’ Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) and the department’s Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS Office), will help institute safety measures in and around K-12 schools; support school violence prevention efforts; provide training to school personnel and students; and implement evidence-based threat assessments.

According to a statement, Hanover Schools' Director of School Safety and Security Michael O'Donnell will use the funds to install a new video surveillance system across the district's four buildings. A new building will also be constructed and fitted with the system. The district has decided to upgrade their surveillance with analytics and facial recognition-enabled cameras.

“I applaud the... Hanover, Indiana School District in their endeavors to enhance school safety with these federal grants,” said United States Attorney Clifford D. Johnson.

The Students, Teachers and Officers Preventing School Violence Act of 2018 (the “STOP School Violence Act”) gives the Justice Department the authority to provide awards directly to states, units of local government, Indian tribes, and public agencies (such as school districts and law enforcement agencies) to improve security at schools and on school grounds through evidence-based school safety programs. It also provides grants to ensure a positive school climate by helping students and teachers recognize, respond quickly to, and help prevent acts of violence.