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Security grant for schools

Governor Northam has awarded school security equipment grants to schools across the commonwealth, including Cumberland and Prince Edward County Schools, a press release cited Thursday, Oct. 17.

Cumberland County Elementary School received a $58,067 grant. A $34,621 grant was awarded for Prince Edward County High School and Prince Edward County Middle School.

According to the release, Northam awarded $6 million in new school security equipment grants to public schools across Virginia in order to help protect students and teachers in 340 schools and 70 school divisions.

These grants will help Cumberland and Prince Edward County Schools to pay for security equipment like video monitoring systems, mass notification systems, visitor-identification systems, two way radios, voice and video internal communications, security vestibules, and access control systems.

The School Security Equipment Grants program was established by the 2013 General Assembly, the release cited, after the Dec. 2012 mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut.

The release stated that Northam asked the 2019 General Assembly to more than double the maximum grant allowed for each school division. He also worked with state lawmakers to double the total annual appropriation for the program.

The maximum annual award possible for a school division to receive is now $250,000, instead of the original $100,000 allowed. According to the press release, the total annual appropriation for the program will double next year, from $6 million to $12 million