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Attorney General Lockyer Announces $10.7 Million in School Community Policing Partnership Grants
(SACRAMENTO) - Attorney General Bill Lockyer today announced $10.7 million in grants to 35 school districts and county offices of education throughout California to help combat school violence.
The grants are part of the School Community Policing Partnership (SCPP) program, which, for the fifth year, offers competitive grant funding for the development of school/law enforcement/community partnerships to create or expand a school community policing program to deal with school crime and safety issues. Each grantee is eligible to receive up to $325,000 to be spent over three years.
"During this tough economic time, we can't afford to turn our backs on either our children or public safety. It is critical to maintain school safety programs to provide support to law enforcement, educators and community organizations in their efforts to protect our children," Lockyer said. "The programs that these grants fund will help keep our school kids safe and protect local communities."
A total of 144 applications were received for grants this year. Through a thorough review and scoring process, eight review teams composed of representatives from law enforcement, education and community organizations determined that 35 of the 144 applications for fiscal year 2002-2003 met the eligibility requirements set forth in the School Community Policing Partnership Act of 1998.
Applicants were evaluated on two basic criteria: school community need and a commitment to forming and sustaining a collaborative partnership. A needs assessment was performed based on data from the California Safe Schools Assessment and law enforcement statistics for the community. Applicants develop joint partnerships with law enforcement, probation departments and community organizations to create a comprehensive problem-solving unit. Existing collaboration among law enforcement, schools, health and community-based organizations also was considered important.
The School Community Policing Partnership requires the grants to represent schools in rural, urban and suburban areas throughout California. This year, 12 grantees represent suburban areas, 12 are located in rural communities and 11 fall within urban areas. There are a total of 11 grantees from Northern California,12 from Central California and 12 from Southern California.
This year, seven SCPP programs (Merced County Office of Education, Woodlake Elementary School District, Sacramento City Unified, Castro Valley Unified, Reef-Sunset Unified, East Side Union High School District and Lucia Mar Unified School District) are receiving renewed funding for their collaborative efforts. Benefits that have been reported since their implementation include a reduction in crimes committed by and against children, better class attendance, an increase in academic achievement and an increased feeling of safety on and near the campus.
Additional information about the School Community Policing Partnership Program and a list of this year's grant recipients is available through the Attorney General's Crime and Violence Prevention Center website at http://www.safestate.org/index.cfm?navid=227.