Vast Majority of School Districts in Dallas-Fort Worth Unaware of Federal School Security Grants
A report by CBS 11 found that only five districts in North Texas had applied for the Department of Justice grants, mostly because administrators did not know about the funding.
- By Haley Samsel
- February 19, 2020
An investigation by the CBS affiliate in Dallas found that less than 5 percent of North Texas school districts applied for federal funding for security improvements.
In addition, only four districts in the region -- which refers to the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex, home to millions of Texans and one of the largest metropolitan areas in the country -- have received federal funding. Those districts include Lake Worth ISD, Weatherford ISD, Duncanville ISD and Lovejoy ISD.
The U.S. Department of Justice, which decides on which districts receive grants and for how much, said that five districts out of dozens in the Dallas-Fort Worth area applied for grants. Many administrators told the CBS 11 I-Team that they were unaware of the federal grants before being contacted for the story.
“We subscribe to several grant listings with the federal government as well as sit on the local Mental Health Grant Team and these opportunities were not shared,” a spokesperson for Fort Worth ISD told the news channel.
School security expert Ken Trump told CBS 11 that the government has not done a good job of informing local districts about the grants through “traditional education channels.” The Department of Justice has about $1 billion overall to distribute to schools across the country through the STOP School Violence Act.
“The STOP school violence grants are some of the most elusive grants that I’ve ever seen in working 30 years in school safety,” Trump said. “The vast majority of school districts across the country have no idea that the grants exist.”
He added that residents should be asking their congressional representatives about why their local administrators are not informed of these opportunities. “It’s certainly not the fault of the school districts,” Trump told CBS 11.
Check out the I-Team’s research below on which districts were aware and unaware of the school security grants.
Haley Samsel is an Associate Content Editor for the Infrastructure Solutions Group at 1105 Media.