State law requires state agencies to develop models and guidance for districts to promote positive social and emotional climate.
Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 13. Section 1303-B. School safety and security assessment criteria
(a) Duty to establish. — No later than September 30, 2018, the committee shall establish criteria to be used when conducting school safety and security assessments that include the following: … (3) A student assistance and behavioral health support assessment. The student assistance and behavioral health support assessment shall consist of an analysis of the school entity’s climate, including: (i) The availability of student assistance programs and behavioral health professionals to provide assistance to the school entity. (ii) A review of recommendations by behavioral and physical health professionals and consideration of their recommendations.
Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 13. Section 1306-B. School safety and security grant program
(a) Establishment. — The School Safety and Security Grant Program is established to make school entities within this Commonwealth safer places. (b) Functions generally. — The committee shall perform all functions related to the direct approval, disbursement and administration of grants under the program. (c) Diversity.— The committee shall ensure that grant funding under the program is geographically dispersed throughout this Commonwealth. (d) Supplement and not supplant. — Grant money allocated through the program shall be used to supplement and not supplant existing school entity spending on school safety and security. Nothing shall preclude a school entity from making an application in a subsequent year for the same purpose and amount awarded in a prior year. (e) Effect of revenue received. — Grant money received by a school entity under this section may not be included when calculating the amount to be paid to a charter school under section 1725-A. (f) Minimum allocation. — Each school district that makes a meritorious application as prescribed by the committee under subsection (j) shall receive a minimum grant allocation as follows: (1) A school district with an average daily membership greater than 3,900 shall receive a minimum grant allocation of $45,000. (2) A school district with an average daily membership greater than 2,100 but less than or equal to 3,900 shall receive a minimum grant allocation of $40,000. (3) A school district with an average daily membership greater than 1,200 but less than or equal to 2,100 shall receive a minimum grant allocation of $35,000. (4) A school district with an average daily membership of less than or equal to 1,200 shall receive a minimum grant allocation of $30,000. (g) Limitations. (1) Each school entity may make application annually and no school entity may receive an annual grant allocation that exceeds the minimum allocation in subsection (f) plus $450,000, except a school district of the first class, which may not receive an annual grant allocation that exceeds 7% of the funds available under the grant program, and a school district of the first class A, which may not receive a grant allocation that exceeds 3% of the funds available under the grant program. (2) Grant allocations awarded to a cyber charter school shall be limited to the safety and security needs of students at facilities where tutoring, testing, supplemental programs and services or instruction for students with disabilities occur. (g.1) Whole or partial awards. — The committee, in its discretion, may award in whole or in part a request made by a school entity in its grant application based upon the merit of a specific item requested. (g.2) Sustainability planning. — Sustainability planning is not a necessary component of an application under this section. (g.3) Confidentiality. — Information submitted by school entities as part of the grant application, the disclosure of which would be reasonably likely to result in a substantial and demonstrable risk of physical harm or the personal security of students or staff shall remain confidential and shall not be subject to the act of February 14, 2008 (P.L.6, No.3), known as the Right-to-Know Law. The committee may release aggregate data at its discretion. (h) School Safety and Security Fund. (1) The School Safety and Security Fund is established as a special nonlapsing fund in the State Treasury. (2) All money deposited in the fund and the interest it accrues are appropriated to the commission on a continuing basis to award grants under this article. (3) No administrative action shall prevent the deposit of money into the fund in the fiscal year in which the money is received. (4) The fund may only be used for the grant program authorized under this article and no money in the fund may be transferred or diverted to any other purpose by administrative action. (5) Money available to the fund shall include appropriations and transfers from the General Fund, special funds, Federal funds and other sources of revenue made available to it. (6) Grants under this section shall be awarded no later than March 1, 2020, and each March 1 thereafter. (7) Not more than 12.5% of the fund may be allocated annually for grants under subsection (j)(22). (i) Community violence prevention programs. (1) Municipalities, institutions of higher education, community-based organizations and other entities approved by the committee are the only eligible applicants under subsection (j)(22). (2) (Reserved). (j) Specific purposes. — The committee shall provide grants to school entities for programs that address safety and security, including: (1) Safety and security assessments that meet the committee’s criteria. (2) Conflict resolution or dispute management, including restorative justice strategies. (3) School-wide positive behavior support that includes primary or universal, secondary and tertiary supports and interventions in school entities. (4) School-based diversion programs. (5) Peer helper programs. (6) Risk assessment, safety-related, violence prevention curricula, including dating violence curricula and restorative justice strategies. (7) Classroom management. (8) Student codes of conduct. (9) Training to undertake a districtwide assessment of risk factors that increase the likelihood of problem behaviors among students. (10) Development and implementation of research-based violence prevention programs that address risk factors to reduce incidents of problem behaviors among students, including, but not limited to, bullying. (11) Thorough, districtwide school safety, violence prevention, emergency preparedness and all-hazards plans, including revisions or updates to such plans and conducting emergency preparedness drills and related activities with local emergency responders. (12) Security planning and purchase of security-related technology, which may include metal detectors, protective lighting, specialty trained canines, surveillance equipment, special emergency communications equipment, automated external defibrillators, electronic locksets, deadbolts, trauma kits and theft control devices and training in the use of security-related technology. Security planning and purchase of security-related technology shall be based on safety needs identified by the school entity’s board of school directors. (13) Institution of student, staff and visitor identification systems, including criminal background check software. (14) Provision of specialized staff and student training programs, including training for Student Assistance Program team members in the referral of students at risk of violent behavior to appropriate community-based services and behavioral health services and training related to prevention and early intervention. (15) Counseling services for students. (16) A system for the management of student discipline, including misconduct and criminal offenses. (17) Staff training programs in the use of positive behavior supports, de-escalation techniques and appropriate responses to student behavior that may require immediate intervention. (18) Costs associated with the training and compensation of school resource officers and school police officers. (19) Costs associated with the training and compensation of certified guidance counselors, licensed professional counselors, licensed social workers, licensed clinical social workers and school psychologists. (20) Administration of evidence-based screenings for adverse childhood experiences that are proven to be determinants of physical, social and behavioral health and provide trauma-informed counseling services as necessary to students based upon the screening results. (21) Trauma-informed approaches to education, including: (i) Increasing student and school employee access to quality trauma support services and behavioral health care, including the following: (A) Hiring or contracting with certified guidance counselors, licensed professional counselors, licensed social workers, licensed clinical social workers, school psychologists and other professional health personnel to provide services to students and school employees. (B) Developing collaborative efforts between the school entity and behavioral health professionals to identify students in need of trauma support and to provide prevention, screening, referral and treatment services to students potentially in need of services. (ii) Programs providing: (A) Trauma-informed approaches to education in the curriculum, including training of school employees, school directors and behavioral health professionals to develop safe, stable and nurturing learning environments that prevent and mitigate the effects of trauma. (B) Services for children and their families, as appropriate, who have experienced or are at risk of experiencing trauma, including those who are low-income, homeless, involved in the child welfare system or involved in the juvenile justice system. (22) Programs designed to reduce community violence, including: (i) Increase access to quality trauma-informed support services and behavioral health care by linking the community with local trauma support and behavioral health systems. (ii) Provide health services and intervention strategies by coordinating the services provided by eligible applicants and coordinated care organizations, public health entities, nonprofit youth service providers and community-based organizations. (iii) Provide mentoring and other intervention models to children and their families who have experienced trauma or are at risk of experiencing trauma, including those who are low-income, homeless, in foster care, involved in the criminal justice system, unemployed, experiencing a mental illness or substance abuse disorder or not enrolled in or at risk of dropping out of an educational institution. (iv) Foster and promote communication between the school entity, community and law enforcement. (v) Any other program or model designed to reduce community violence and approved by the committee. (23) The implementation of Article XIII-E. (j.1) Prioritization of grants. (1) The committee may in its discretion utilize the information obtained from the most recent survey instrument completed by a school entity under section 1305-B and trends in applications from the prior year to prioritize the allocation of grants from among the specific purposes enumerated in subsection (j). (2) If the commission chooses to prioritize the allocation of grants, it shall provide guidance in the funding announcement detailing the specific purposes enumerated under subsection (j) which it intends to prioritize when making grant awards. (j.2) Training. — The committee shall conduct informational training for applicants outlining the grant priorities and completion of applications. (k) Coordination of grant distribution. — The department shall coordinate the distribution of grants under Article XIII-A with the committee to ensure the most effective use of resources. (l) Audits. (1) The commission may randomly audit and monitor grant recipients to ensure the appropriate use of grant funds and compliance with the provisions of subsection (d). (2) The Auditor General shall not perform audits related to school safety and security assessments, survey instruments and grant applications.
Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 14. Article XIII-A. Safe Schools. Section 1302-A. Office for Safe Schools.
(a) There is hereby established in the Department of Education an Office for Safe Schools. (b) The office shall have the power and duty to implement the following: (1) To coordinate antiviolence efforts between school, professional, parental, governmental, law enforcement and community organizations and associations. (2) To collect, develop and disseminate information, policies, strategies and other information to assist in the development of programs to impact school violence. (2.1) To direct all school entities to submit annual school violence statistics and reports to the office no later than July 31 of each year. (3) To provide direct training to school employes, parents, law enforcement officials and communities on effective measures to prevent and combat school violence. (4) To advise school entities and nonpublic schools on the development of policies to be used regarding possession of weapons by any person, acts of violence and protocols for coordination with and reporting to law enforcement officials and the Department of Education. (4.1) To verify the existence of corrective action plans to reduce incidents of violence as required in the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (Public Law 107-110, 115 Stat. 1425). (5) To develop forms to be used by school entities and police departments for reporting incidents involving acts of violence and possession of weapons on school property. The forms shall be reviewed on a biennial basis and revised when necessary. (6) To verify that each school entity has a biennially updated and reexecuted memorandum of understanding with local law enforcement and has filed such memorandum with the office on a biennial basis. (7) To publish and post on the Department of Education’s Internet website a School Safety Annual Report no later than November 1 of each calendar year outlining all incidents required to be reported under section 1303-A and any school district that failed to submit a report under section 1303-A. (8) To establish criteria, in consultation with the Pennsylvania State Police, for certifying approved vendors to provide school police officers to nonpublic schools for the purposes of awarding grants under subsection (c.1)(3). (9) To publish and post on the Department of Education’s publicly accessible Internet website a listing of all approved vendors under paragraph (8). (c) In addition to the powers and duties set forth under subsection (b), the office is authorized to make targeted grants to school entities, and to intermediate units on behalf of nonpublic schools, to fund programs which address school violence, including: (1) Conflict resolution or dispute management, including restorative justice strategies. (1.1) School-wide positive behavior support that includes primary or universal, secondary and tertiary supports and interventions in school entities. (1.2) School-based diversion programs. (2) Peer helpers programs. (3) Risk assessment, safety-related, violence prevention curricula, including, but not limited to, dating violence curricula and restorative justice strategies. (4) Classroom management. (5) Student codes of conduct. (6) Training to undertake a districtwide assessment of risk factors that increase the likelihood of problem behaviors among students. (7) Development and implementation of research-based violence prevention programs that address risk factors to reduce incidents of problem behaviors among students including, but not limited to, bullying. (8) Comprehensive, districtwide school safety, violence prevention, emergency preparedness and all-hazards plans, including revisions or updates to such plans and conducting emergency preparedness drills and related activities with local emergency responders. (9) Security planning, purchase of security-related technology which may include metal detectors, protective lighting, surveillance equipment, special emergency communications equipment, electronic locksets, deadbolts and theft control devices and training in the use of security-related technology. Security planning and purchase of security-related technology shall be based on safety needs identified by the school entity’s board of directors. (10) Institution of student, staff and visitor identification systems, including criminal background check software.
Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 14. Section 1502-E. Character education programs.
(a) AUTHORIZATION.— The board of school directors of a school district may establish and implement a character education program in its schools. (b) CURRICULUM CONTENTS.— The program may include and teach the following basic civil values and character traits: (1) Trustworthiness, including honesty, integrity, reliability and loyalty. (2) Respect, including regard for others, tolerance and courtesy. (3) Responsibility, including hard work, economic self-reliance, accountability, diligence, perseverance and self-control. (4) Fairness, including justice, consequences of bad behavior, principles of nondiscrimination and freedom from prejudice. (5) Caring, including kindness, empathy, compassion, consideration, generosity and charity. (6) Citizenship, including love of country, concern for the common good, respect for authority and the law and community mindedness. (c) ADDITIONAL ELEMENTS.— The program may also include and teach the importance of a service ethic and community outreach. (d) CHARACTER EDUCATION ADVISORY GROUP.— (1) If a board of school directors elects to establish the program, the board of school directors shall develop the program in consultation with a character education advisory group. The board of directors of a school district shall appoint the members of the character education advisory group. (2) A character education advisory group shall consult with and advise the board of school directors in the development of the program. The members of the character education advisory group shall elect a chairperson of the group. (3) The board of school directors shall appoint to the character education advisory group no less than two representatives from each of the following groups: (i) Parents and legal guardians of students in the school district. (ii) Teachers and administrators employed by the school district. (iii) Other members of the community where the school district is located, including social, cultural, business and religious leaders. (4) The board of school directors shall: (i) Cooperate and consult with the character education advisory group. (ii) Provide assistance and relevant materials to the character education advisory group. (5) (i) The character education advisory group shall consult with and advise the board of school directors until such time that the program is fully developed and deemed completed. (ii) The board of school directors shall have the sole authority to determine the completion of the program and may elect to continue the duration of the character education advisory group for up to two additional years for the purpose of receiving consultation and advice from the character education advisory group regarding the school district’s implementation of the program. (e) INTEGRATION OF CONCEPTS INTO TOTAL CURRICULUM.— The program shall be integrated into the school procedures and environment and structured to instruct primarily through example. Classroom instruction may also be used to supplement the program.
Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 14. Section 1503-E. Department duties and powers.
The department shall: (1) Establish criteria and guidelines for the establishment and implementation of programs that are consistent with this article. These guidelines shall also include methods of evaluating the programs and curricula. (2) Provide resources and technical assistance to boards of directors of school districts regarding the establishment and implementation of successful programs, upon the request of the board of directors of the school district. (3) Identify and analyze effective programs and practices and related professional development for professional educators and provide such information to a school district upon request of the board of directors of the school district. (4) Collect and disseminate among school districts information regarding programs and practices and potential support sources, including character education programs that have been successfully established and implemented in other states. (5) Provide resources and technical assistance to boards of school directors of school districts that support the professional development of professional educators in the establishment and implementation of the program. (6) Collect and disseminate among school districts information regarding effective professional education for professional educators regarding the establishment and implementation of the program. (7) Seek, apply for and accept grants or contributions of funds from any public or private source, including the acceptance of Federal funds appropriated by the General Assembly for the purposes of this article. (8) To the extent that funds are available, establish and award grants under the grant program to assist school districts in establishing and implementing programs. (9) Maintain a list of school districts that have established and implemented the program pursuant to this article. (10) Prepare and submit an annual report to the Education Committee of the Senate and the Education Committee of the House of Representatives regarding the administration and operation of programs and grants awarded under the grant program. The report shall include:
- (i) A summary of the guidelines and criteria established by the department and the establishment and operation of the grant program.
- (ii) A listing of the sources of funding sought by the department for use in the grant program.
- (iii) A listing of the number of school districts that established and implemented programs.
- (iv) A description of each school district’s program and the integration into the curriculum.
- (v) A description of measures utilized by school districts to provide parent, professional educator and community involvement.
Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 2010 Act 104. Section 1553. Dating Violence Education.
(a) The department, through its Office for Safe Schools, and in consultation with the State Board of Education, shall:
- (1) Develop, within six (6) months of the effective date of this section, a model dating violence policy to assist school districts in developing policies for dating violence reporting and response.
- (2) Consult with at least one (1) domestic violence center and at least one (1) rape crisis center in developing the model dating violence policy.
Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes Section 1949 Act 14. Article XIII-A. Safe Schools. 1302.1-A Regulations
(a) Within one year of the effective date of this section, the State Board of Education shall promulgate final-omitted regulations pursuant to the act of June 25, 1982 (P.L. 633, No. 181), known as the “Regulatory Review Act,” necessary to implement this article. The regulations shall include the following:
- (1) A model memorandum of understanding between school entities and local police departments. The model memorandum of understanding shall be reviewed on a biennial basis and revised where necessary. The State Board of Education may revise the model memorandum of understanding by publishing a notice in the Pennsylvania Bulletin that contains the complete revised model memorandum of understanding. The revised model memorandum of understanding shall be incorporated into the Pennsylvania Code in place of the existing model memorandum of understanding.
- (2) Protocol for the notification of the police department when an offense listed under section 1303-A(b)(4.1) occurs on school property, which shall include a requirement that the local police department be notified immediately when such an offense occurs.
- (3) Protocol for the notification of the police department at the discretion of the chief school administrator regarding an offense listed under section 1303-A(b)(4.2) or any other offense that occurs on school property.
- (4) Protocol for emergency and nonemergency response by the police department, which shall include a requirement that the school district shall supply the police department with a copy of the comprehensive disaster response and emergency preparedness plan as required by 35 Pa.C.S. § 7701(g) (relating to duties concerning disaster prevention).
- (5) Procedures and protocols for the response and handling of students with a disability, including procedures related to student behavior as required by 22 Pa. Code § 14.104 (relating to special education plans) and 14.133 (relating to positive behavior support).
(b)(1) In promulgating the regulations required under subsection (a), the State Board of Education shall convene and consult with a Statewide advisory committee which shall include a police chief, juvenile public defender, school superintendent, school principal, district attorney, solicitor of a school district, special education supervisor, special education advocate and in-school probation officer and one designee from the Department of Education, the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency, the Municipal Police Officers’ Education and Training Commission, the Juvenile Court Judges’ Commission and the Pennsylvania State Police.
- (2) Members of the committee shall be selected to be representative of the rural, suburban and urban school entities of this Commonwealth.
- (3) The advisory committee shall be convened no later than sixty (60) days after the effective date of this section and shall meet regularly to fulfill the requirements of this section.