2018 Federal Commission on School Safety Final Report: Shootings, Cyberbullying, Mental Health and Counseling, Suspicious Activity Reporting, Discipline Guidance, Firearm Purchases, Teacher Training

2018 Federal Commission on School Safety Final Report: Shootings, Cyberbullying, Mental Health and Counseling, Suspicious Activity Reporting, Discipline Guidance, Firearm Purchases, Teacher Training

This unique report, released in late December 2018, has been professionally converted for accurate flowing-text e-book format reproduction. Since the horrific February 14, 2018 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, the Trump Administration has devoted considerable time, resources, and effort to studying ways to keep our students safe and our schools secure. The Federal Commission on School Safety was designed to both research and recommend solutions to advance the safety of our schools. The Commission’s observations and recommendations are contained in this report. The Commission recognizes that the problem of school violence is long-standing and complex and that there are certain limits to what the federal government can do. This Commission was not established to provide a single solution to this problem, nor did the Commissioners set out to mandate uniform policy to every community. In fact, it is our considered belief that doing so would prove counterproductive. There can be no “one-size-fits-all” approach for an issue this complex. The shooting in Parkland, FL, was not the first of its kind, nor is it likely to be the last. This does not mean we should give up on doing all we can to minimize the chances that something like that could happen again. In the pages that follow, the Commission makes recommendations that address multiple aspects of school safety. It does so based on the insights, experiences, and expertise of a wide range of individuals. The recommendations are predicated on the policies already working in state and local communities. They outline steps we all can take—families, communities, schools, houses of worship, law enforcement, medical professionals, government, and others.

1. Character Development and a Culture of Connectedness * 2. Cyberbullying and School Safety * 3. Curating a Healthier and Safer Approach: Issues of Mental Health and Counseling for Our Young * 4. Integrating Mental Health, Primary Care, Family Services, and Court-Ordered Treatment * 5. Using Suspicious Activity Reporting and Threat Assessments to Enhance School Safety * 6. Effects of Press Coverage of Mass Shootings * 7. Violent Entertainment and Rating Systems * 8. The Obama Administration’s “Rethink School Discipline” Guidance * 9. The Effectiveness and Appropriateness of Psychotropic Medication for Treatment of Troubled Youth * 10. The Efficacy of Age Restrictions for Firearm Purchases * 11. Extreme Risk Protection Order Laws * 12. Improvements to the FBI’s Public Access Line * Section 2: Protect and Mitigate * 13. Training School Personnel to Help Ensure Student Safety * 14. Emergency and Crisis Training for Law Enforcement * 15. The Transition of Military Veterans and Retired Law Enforcement Officers into New Careers in Education. * 16. Best Practices for School Building Security * 17. The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act and Other Statutory and Regulatory Privacy Protections * 18. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act and Other Statutory and Regulatory Privacy Protections * Section 3: Respond and Recover * 19. Active Shooter Preparedness and Mitigation

This report contains examples of, adaptations of, and links to resources created and maintained by other public and private organizations. This information, informed by research and gathered in part from practitioners, is provided for the reader’s convenience and is included here to offer examples of the many resources that educators, parents, advocates, administrators, and other concerned parties may find helpful and use at their discretion.

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