Assemblywoman SERENA DIMASO
District 13 (Monmouth)
Assemblywoman NANCY F. MUNOZ
District 21 (Morris, Somerset and Union)
Assemblywoman HOLLY T. SCHEPISI
District 39 (Bergen and Passaic)
Requires Commissioner of Education to review school safety and security plans.
CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT
An Act concerning school safety and security plans.
Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:
1. a. No later than six months following the effective date of this act, each board of education shall submit a copy of its most recent districtwide school safety and security plan to the Commissioner of Education for review. The commissioner may direct a specific school district to submit its plan at any point during that timeframe, and may prioritize a school district that has not voluntarily submitted its plan to the commissioner for review within the prior two school years.
b. The commissioner shall review each school district's plan. The commissioner's review shall include, but need not be limited to, the following factors:
(1) that the list of individuals to be notified in the event of an emergency is current;
(2) faculty and staff have been assigned primary and alternate responsibilities for addressing an emergency situation;
(3) documentation of the written procedures regarding building access and visitor policies;
(4) that policies exist regarding bullying prevention and character education;
(5) a comprehensive hazard analysis has been completed;
(6) that procedures and protocols for active shooter situations, bomb threats, and lockdowns have been established; and
(7) crisis communication procedures for interacting with, as appropriate, emergency responders, faculty and staff, students, parents, and the media have been developed.
c. The commissioner shall submit a written report to each board of education summarizing the results of the review. The report shall detail any weaknesses identified during the review and provide recommended solutions. In order to expedite the submission of the reviews' results to boards of education, the commissioner shall complete and submit the reports to school districts on a rolling basis.
d. No later than three years following the effective date of this act, the commissioner shall submit to the Governor, and to the Legislature pursuant to section 2 of P.L.1991, c.164 (C.52:14-19.1), a report summarizing the results of the reviews performed pursuant to this section. The report shall summarize the results in the aggregate and shall not include information specific to an individual school district.
2. This act shall take
Pursuant to State Board of Education regulations at N.J.A.C.6A:16-5.1, each school district must develop and annually update a districtwide school safety and security plan. Currently, a school district may submit its plan to the Department of Education's Office of School Preparedness and Emergency Planning for review. Under this bill, all school districts would be required to, no later than six months following the effective date, submit the plan to the Commissioner of Education. The commissioner will review districts' plans and submit a written report to each district that details any weaknesses that have been identified and recommend solutions. No later than three years following the bill's effective date, the commissioner would be required to submit a report to the Governor and Legislature summarizing the results of the reviews.