Statement by Dr. Terry Brooks, executive director of Kentucky Youth Advocates
The issue of school safety is compelling, complicated, and complex. And rather than giving in to simplistic solutions, Senate Bill 1 will ensure that every Kentucky student is guaranteed a safe and supportive school environments in which to learn and grow.
The critical nature of school safety has elevated discussions around the need for a multi-faceted approach that not only addresses physical safety, but also the psychological safety of students. With today’s passage of Senate Bill 1 by the Senate, Kentucky schools are on a path to achieving just that for students.
With the leadership of Senator Max Wise, SB 1 seeks to comprehensively address improving the safety of students through key cornerstone commitments. As an example, this legislation addresses the appropriate role and training of law enforcement officers in schools and needed school building safety improvements. But it also underscores the imperative roles that adult-student and student-student relationships, nurturing school climates, and access to school-based behavioral health services play within the equation of school safety. We’re especially pleased to see the change to meet the national standard of having one school counselor to every 250 students. When students have access to quality behavioral and other health professionals and preventive services, issues like depression and anxiety can be addressed before challenges get more serious.
We applaud Senator Wise for his leadership on this legislation, members of the School Safety Working Group for their thoughtful approach to the issue of school safety, and the Kentucky Senate for supporting SB 1.
Stay up-to-date on Blueprint for Kentucky’s Children priorities and other bills that are good for kids on our Kentucky General Assembly Bill Tracker.
About Kentucky Youth Advocates
Kentucky Youth Advocates believes all children deserve to be safe, healthy, and secure. As THE independent voice for Kentucky’s children, we work to ensure policymakers create investments and policies that are good for children. Learn more at www.kyyouth.org.