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Sununu Creates Task Force to Focus on School Safety Preparedness

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Allegra Boverman for NHPR
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Governor Chris Sununu announced the creation Monday of a new school safety task force.

The news comes following the school shooting in Florida and threats of violence at schools here in New Hampshire.

According to a statement from the Governor’s office, the new task force will include representatives from the state, law enforcement, schools, and local governments.

It will spend the next few months developing stronger safety protocols for New Hampshire schools.

 

The new Governor's School Safety Preparedness Task Force comes a a week and a half after 17 people were shot to death at a high school in Parkland, Florida.

He says the task force will bring together state and local officials, law enforcement and school officials, and will build upon work done in recent years by the state Office of Homeland Security to conduct security assessments in hundreds of schools across the state.
 
The statement says the group will meet regularly to ensure that New Hampshire’s schools are “the safest in the nation.”

The creation of the task force comes after two arrests were made in separate school threats in Exeter and Epping.

In the wake of these events, Sununu has resisted calls for stronger gun laws. Instead he has pushed for stronger security measures at schools.

Under a new state law, all schools are required to develop school emergency plans and submit them to the Department of Education. And a new Public School Infrastructure Fund is investing nearly $20 million for schools to make infrastructure and security upgrades.
 
Sununu says $16 million of that was already allocated to school. The money goes to pay for security measures like reinforced windows and doors and modern exterior door locks.
 
(Material from The Associated Press was used in this report.)

Jason Moon is a senior reporter and producer on the Document team. He has created longform narrative podcast series on topics ranging from unsolved murders, to presidential elections, to secret lists of police officers.

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