July 26, 2018 — During today’s meeting of the Federal Commission on School Safety, NSBA’s Chief Legal Officer, Francisco Negron, Jr. shared our insight on how information-sharing and accountability supports school officials’ commitment to eliminate disruptive behavior and violence and ensure that our schools are safe learning environments. School boards set rigorous standards for student conduct and through these policies set disciplinary practices and procedures to maximize the opportunities for all students and provide them with safe and successful in-school experiences. While decisions in matters of student discipline, particularly as they relate to instances of individual behavior, are best left in the hands of local education experts, there is a significant role for the federal government. Greater and sustained federal resources are vital to helping support and sustain school resource officers, school counseling, emergency preparedness and response training and locally determined programs that expand access to mental health services and support comprehensive “wraparound” services. Collaboration and communication with local law enforcement agencies is an essential part of prevention, preparedness, mitigation and emergency response and recovery plans. The removal of barriers that get in the way of the collaboration of such agencies will greatly benefit local education leaders and the children they serve.
Negron’s full testimony is available here.