The Nevada Department of Education (NDE) is proud to announce that it is one of the first state education agencies in the country to distribute the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act (BSCA) Stronger Connections grant funds to school districts and district-sponsored charter schools across the state.
"We are thrilled to be at the forefront of delivering these critical resources to our school districts and district-sponsored charter schools," said Jhone Ebert, State Superintendent of Public Instruction. "School safety and the well-being of our students and educators is of the utmost importance and we wanted to ensure our schools could start putting this money to good use as soon as possible. I applaud everyone involved in this effort and look forward to seeing all the great things recipient districts and schools will do with the funds."
The Nevada Department of Education successfully allocated a total of more than $8.4 million in BSCA Stronger Connections grant funds to nine school districts and 11 district-sponsored charter schools throughout the state. The amount given to each district or school varied based on need and a variety of eligibility criteria. The funding will empower these educational institutions to carry out a wide range of initiatives aimed at improving school safety and strengthening connections within their communities.
The grant funds distributed by NDE will support numerous vital initiatives in three key areas:
Increasing physical and environmental school safety strategies, such as hiring additional officers and adding security cameras.
Increasing emotional/social/relational school safety and health strategies, such as hiring more counselors or health professionals and increasing the capacity for schools and districts to bill Medicaid for eligible services.
Increasing the implementation of Multi-Tiered Systems of Supports or Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports, such as substance abuse prevention/intervention, implementation of restorative practices and bullying/harassment prevention.
“Last year, on the 30th anniversary of my father’s death due to a senseless act of gun violence, I cast my vote to pass the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act,” said Congressman Steven Horsford. “The year before that, I introduced my Break the Cycle of Violence Act, a bill that laid the foundation for the Community Violence Intervention language included in the bipartisan package. Nevadans are horrified by the epidemic of gun violence that continues to steal away lives, devastate families and shatter communities across the country. Thanks to that legislation, communities nationwide can now access these funds. I’m proud that Nevada is swiftly acting to deliver these grants to our communities. Over $8.4 million to our school districts for these programs will reduce crime, save lives and break the cycle of violence.”
Funding is provided federally through the U.S. Department of Education as part of the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act signed into law in June 2022. The Stronger Connections Grant funding is intended to help create safer, healthier learning environments in schools. It aims to prevent and respond to bullying, violence and hate, and it supports other programs and activities that improve school environments. The goal is to create a better and safer place for students to learn and grow, both as individuals and as part of the larger school community.