County schools sharing in BWC grant

Staff report

Three Fulton County school systems are within 219 school districts in Ohio receiving part of $6.6 million in grants from the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) to improve school safety and security.

Archbold Area Schools and Pettisville Local Schools will each receive $40,000, and the Northwest Ohio Educational Service Center in Archbold will receive $39,979.

BWC’s School Safety and Security Grant Program helps schools purchase equipment to improve safety and security and reduce the potential for injuries. This program is aligned with Gov. Mike DeWine’s STRONG Ohio plan, which includes his Ohio School Safety Center initiative and the expansion of Ohio’s statewide school safety tip line.

“It’s important that we continue investing in Ohio schools’ safety, while giving each school the flexibility to invest in resources that are specifically needed for their facilities,” DeWine said. “In addition to the funds from the recent budget, we will continue to make investments that will help safeguard students, teachers, and staff.”

BWC Administrator/CEO Stephanie McCloud said, “These dollars also keep workers safe in their daily routine activities by paying for equipment that lessens the risk for sprains, strains, and other injuries that might arise on the job.”

The bureau pays $3 to every $1 a school district spends toward eligible equipment, which includes:

• Building/grounds/transportation security enhancements such as interior and exterior security doors and mechanisms. Examples include: panic bars or other fire code compliant door-locking mechanisms; bulletproof glass; bullet resistant coating materials for existing glass; modifications of building/facility entrances to restrict access; and secured keycard systems.

• Incident response equipment such as equipment bags/backpacks stocked with trauma first-aid supplies; two-way communication devices and software designed to directly interface with emergency responder radio systems; and school-wide panic alarm/panic button systems.

• Other equipment that improves workplace safety.

The program is part of BWC’s larger Safety Grants Program.

Staff report