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DeSantis signs bill aimed at making Florida schools safer

DeSantis
Posted at 12:22 PM, Jun 07, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-07 12:22:52-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — The governor signed off on Florida’s latest school safety bill Tuesday morning, with changes coming as the nation continues to grieve the deaths of 19 students and two teachers after a mass shooting in Texas last month.

There was no grand bill signing ceremony for this piece of legislation. The governor gave it ink behind closed doors — issuing a press release a short time later.

In a statement, Gov. Ron DeSantis said “Every child needs a safe and secure learning environment,” and that signing HB 1421 builds on the steps taken since 2019 to implement Marjory Stoneman Douglas Public Safety Commission recommendations.

The changes include—

  • Improved training for sworn and non-sworn school officers 
  • Required emergency reunification plans
  • Gives the state ed commissioner power to enforce current school safety standards 
  • Eextends the MSD Commission until 2026.

Parents of Parkland victims have now secured five consecutive years of school safety reform. They considered this bill another step in the right direction.

“The only way we can protect our children and our teachers at school is by coming together and actually looking for solutions," said Stand with Parkland president Tony Montalto. "We've done that here in Florida.”

HB 1421 was unanimously approved by the Florida legislature, earlier this year.

Yet— some Democrats believe more needs to be done.

A handful of lawmakers have called for universal background checks and expanded red flag laws.

They’ve also condemned Governor DeSantis for vowing to sign a constitutional carry bill before he leaves office.