School safety bill advances in Mississippi House

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(RICHARD BOUHET/AFP/Getty Images)

JACKSON, Miss. — A bill meant to make Mississippi schools safer from mass shootings and other threats is advancing.

The House Education Committee on Thursday passed House Bill 1283 , sending it to the full House for more consideration.

The plan would require safety inspections and twice-yearly active shooter drills at public schools. It would also create a threat-reporting mechanism to be monitored by three dedicated analysts at the state Department of Public Safety.

A task force convened by Gov. Phil Bryant recommended that every school have a school resource officer. State Rep. Mark Baker, a Brandon Republican sponsoring the bill, says he wants to expand a cost-sharing program to encourage that goal, but it’s unclear if lawmakers will provide enough money.

The legislation doesn’t include a task force recommendation to sometimes arm teachers.

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