Craig Harris/Macon County Times State representative Kelly Keisling announced last week that Macon County will receive $169,050 for school resource officers.

Craig Harris/Macon County Times

State representative Kelly Keisling announced last week that Macon County will receive $169,050 for school resource officers.

State Representative Kelly Keisling announced last week that there's more than $513,000 in funding for schools in District 38 that will be used for the implementation of additional solutions to address school safety concerns.

The funds are a portion of approximately $35 million in budget funding -- $25 million in one-time funding and $10 million in recurring grants -- approved as part of Republican-led efforts during the 2018 legislative session to enhance protections for the future leaders of our state.

Dollar amounts were awarded based upon each district's relative share of the Basic Education Program (BEP) -- the formula through which state education dollars are generated and distributed to our schools.

Specifically, Clay County will receive $47,910 ($13,690 in recurring funds, $34,220 in non-recurring monies) for safety enhancements related to access control, visitor management and surveillance, which were areas identified during a recently-conducted school security review and assessment of facilities in the county.

Additionally, $87,110 ($24,890 in recurring funding, $62,220 in non-recurring dollars) has been allocated to Fentress County for improvements in access control, surveillance and communications upgrades at their local academic institutions.

Macon County will receive $169,050 ($48,300 in recurring funds, $120,750 in non-recurring dollars) for school resource officers, as well as improvements related to surveillance and visitor management.

Oneida Schools have been awarded $53,160 ($15,190 in recurring monies, $37,970 in non-recurring dollars) for access control, visitor management and surveillance, while Pickett County Schools is set to receive $28,380 ($8,110 in recurring funding, $20,270 in non-recurring dollars) for access control, upgrades in surveillance, and communications improvements.

Finally, Scott County will receive $127,399 ($39,129 in recurring monies, $88,270 in non-recurring funds) for enhancements to signage, surveillance and communications.

"I am grateful that our schools will receive this important funding to better protect our future leaders," Keisling said. "I appreciate the partnership between our local school officials, the state, and members of our local law enforcement communities during their thoughtful review, assessment and application for these resources. Our children are our future. They should not have to worry about their personal safety while working to achieve their academic goals and dreams. I was honored to fight for them by supporting recommendations made by members of the working group on school safety, which resulted in these funding allocations. We will continue to identify solutions to further enhance their well-being in the years ahead."

As part of the application process, school leaders partnered with the Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security, the Department of Education, and local law enforcement to complete assessments of current safety measures in place at area academic institutions.

All 147 school districts in Tennessee received a portion of school safety funding.

Keisling -- who lives in Byrdstown and represents House District 38, which includes Macon, Clay, Pickett, Scott, and a portion of Fentress counties -- serves as Chairman of the House Insurance and Banking Subcommittee. He also serves as a member of the House Transportation Committee and the House Insurance and Banking Committee.