Florida League of Cities

School Safety (Watch) – PASSED 

CS/CS/CS/HB 1421 (Hawkins) requires the Department of Education to work with local emergency management and law enforcement personnel to create a model reunification plan for use by child care facilities, K-12 schools and public postsecondary educational institutions for schools that are unexpectedly evacuated due to a disaster. Each school district will be required to adopt a district-specific plan by working with local law enforcement. School districts will be required to annually certify, beginning July 1, 2023, that at least 80% of school personnel have received mandatory youth mental health awareness and assistance training. The bill also requires law enforcement officers responsible for responding to specific schools in the event of an active assailant emergency to be physically present on campus during the execution of active assailant emergency drills. The bill also requires the State Board of Education to adopt rules for emergency drill policies relating to the timing, frequency, participation, training, notification, accommodations and responses to threat situations by incident type, as well as to school level and characteristics. The bill specifies that these drills be conducted at least annually. Finally, the bill requires each safe-school officer to complete a mental health crisis intervention training. CS/CS/CS/HB 1421 passed the House (115-0) and the Senate (39-0) and is now awaiting action by the Governor. (Taggart)