Jessica Mathews /

A number of area school districts have been awarded state grants to hire school resource officers and help keep students safe.

Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced on Tuesday that 195 school districts, intermediate school districts, and public-school academies will receive nearly $25 million to support the hiring of 195 school resource officers (SROs) for the next three years. The program is designed to improve safety and security for more than 334,000 students in the state.

Area districts receiving funds are listed below, along with the amount of the award and student enrollment:

Fenton Area Public Schools $143,420 - 3,100 Students
Holly Area Schools $75,733 - 3,100 Students
Linden Community Schools $82,132 - 2,475 Students
Livingston ESA $200,000 - 27,421 Students
Owosso Public Schools $199,857- 2,950 Students
Pinckney Community Schools - $97,500 - 2,120 Students
Williamston Community Schools $81,900 - 1,862 Students

A panel consisting of representatives from education and policing awarded the grants, giving priority to schools and school districts without a school resource officer currently in place, as well as schools from more communities with lower student enrollment and less total per pupil funding.

The funds administered by the Michigan State Police Grants and Community Services Division can be used to support salaries, benefits, and training for SROs. A 50% match is required to be provided by the applicant jurisdiction.

Governor Gretchen Whitmer commented that every parent wants their kids to be safe at school. She said “These grants will help us hire almost 200 more School Resource Officers so we can make sure our children, teacher, and staff are safe at school. Let’s keep working together to make record investments in our students and improve their classroom experience, build up school infrastructure, hire excellent educators, and invest in their comprehensive well-being, from mental health to safety.”

MSP Director Col. Joe Gasper said “These grant awards will not only help to provide better safety in our school buildings by increasing the number of schools throughout the state with at least one SRO, but very importantly, by prioritizing smaller schools in more remote areas, we will reduce the time it takes for a police response in the event of an emergency”.

In June, Governor Whitmer signed legislation that fully funds risk assessments and critical incidence mapping at every school in the state to help protect students and create safety plans in the event of an emergency.

A press release is attached. A complete list of awards is available in the provided link.