1997 Regular Session
To: Education; Appropriations
By: Senator(s) Hall
Senate Bill 2534
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 37-3-83, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO EMPOWER THE STATE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION TO CONDUCT AND IMPLEMENT A FEASIBILITY RESEARCH PROJECT FOR PUBLIC SCHOOL DISTRICTS TO USE VIDEOS IN THE CLASSROOM TO REDUCE STUDENT DISCIPLINE AND PROVIDE FOR TEACHER DEVELOPMENT, AND TO PROVIDE FOR AN ADVISORY COMMITTEE TO SELECT THE CONTRACTOR FOR SUCH PROJECT AND ADVISE ON ITS IMPLEMENTATION; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 37-3-83, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
37-3-83. (1) There is hereby established within the State Department of Education a school violence prevention grant program, available to all eligible public school districts, to assist in financing programs to fight school violence.
(2) Subject to the extent of appropriations available, the school violence prevention grant program shall offer any of the following specific preventive services, and other additional services appropriate to school violence prevention:
(a) Metal detectors;
(b) Video surveillance cameras and monitoring equipment for classrooms, school buildings and school buses; * * *
(c) Crisis management/action teams responding to school violence; and
(d) Violence prevention training, conflict resolution training, and other appropriate training designated by the State Department of Education for faculty and staff.
(3) Each local school district of this state may annually apply for up to Fifty Thousand Dollars ($50,000.00) in school violence prevention grant funds subject to appropriations by the Legislature. In order to be eligible for such program, each local school board desiring to participate shall apply to the State Department of Education by May 31 before the beginning of the applicable fiscal year on forms provided by the department, and shall be required to establish a local school Violence Task Force to involve members of the community in the school violence prevention effort. The State Department of Education shall determine by July 1 of each succeeding year which local school districts have submitted approved applications for school violence prevention grants.
(4) As part of the school violence prevention grant program, the State Department of Education shall conduct a feasibility study to research the feasibility of using video camera equipment in the classroom to address the following:
(a) Determine if video cameras in the classroom reduces student discipline problems;
(b) Enable teachers to present clear and convincing evidence of a student's disruptive behavior to the student, the principal, the superintendent and the student's parents; and
(c) Enable teachers to receive an evaluation of teaching performance for assessment, review and diagnostic feedback for developmental purposes.
There is hereby created an advisory committee to select the contractor for said feasibility study and to advise the State Department of Education on all phases of implementation. The advisory committee shall be composed of:
(a) A member of the Senate designated by the Lieutenant Governor, who shall serve in a nonvoting capacity;
(b) A member of the House of Representatives designated by the Speaker of the House of Representatives, who shall serve in a nonvoting capacity;
(c) The Chairman of the State Board of Education;
(d) The Chairman of the State Personnel Board; and
(e) The State Auditor.
All appointments to the committee shall be made within thirty (30) days after passage of this act, and within fifteen (15) days after appointments have been made, on a day to be designated by the State Superintendent of Education, the committee shall meet and organize itself. A majority of the members of the committee shall constitute a quorum. The committee shall select a contractor prior to July 1, 1997, in order for the feasibility study to begin at the beginning of the Fiscal Year 1998.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after its passage.