Letter: Requesting support of HB 178, regarding security drills in schools (June 13, 2017)

June 13, 2017

Senate Education Committee

Re: House Bill 178

Dear Senator,

On behalf of the 4,500 elected officials who govern the commonwealth’s public school districts, we are writing to request your support of House Bill 178, sponsored by Representative Gary Day, to be considered by the Senate Education Committee at your meeting on Wednesday June 14, 2017 at 10:00am. The Pennsylvania School Boards Association (PSBA) supports the goals of House Bill 178.

House Bill 178 requires all school entities to conduct an annual school security drill in place of a monthly fire drill in each school building within 90 days of the start of each school year. The bill also outlines the steps and procedures for a school district to set up the drill with law enforcement and alert parents of the date, time and address of the drill.

PSBA appreciates the work and recommendations of the bipartisan Select Committee that was put in place to review and investigate the state’s current laws, regulations, and policies concerning safety and security in our schools. This bill also limits the burden of public schools by allowing the safety drill to happen in place of one monthly fire drill instead of adding an additional drill. PSBA supports the ultimate goal of having schools prepared for specific safety concerns with the goal to make learning environments as safe as possible.

PSBA would like to thank Chairman Eichelberger for bringing up this bill that will allow school districts to prepare to keep their students as safe as possible. If you have any questions or concerns please feel free to contact me at (717) 506-2450 x3337.

Sincerely,

John M. Callahan, Assistant Executive Director