HB 49 Passed – Security Guard Training Mandated
Through the budget process this year, Senate Bill 621 of Act 67 of 2019 added a requirement for public schools and nonpublic schools that employ school resource officers (security guards) and school police officers to ensure that their officers have the NASRO (National Association of School Resource Officers) training (http://nasro.org/training/). This is a five-day or 40-hour course.
On November 27, Governor Wolf signed House Bill 49! This extends the previous deadline of six months for officers to receive the training.
School security guards are required to take the Basic SRO class offered by NASRO. That is the 40-hour, 5-day course. The School Safety and Security Committee voted on equivalency standards for other training programs and will be posting information on two additional vendors shortly.
The deadline for compliance with the training requirements varies by whether or not the guard is armed. Unarmed guards are required to comply with the training requirements by the beginning of the 2020-2021 school year.
Armed school security guards employed before September 2, 2019 have until February 28, 2020 to complete the training requirements. There is a hardship provision allowing the governing body of the school entity to extend the deadline with proof of hardship. The latest the deadline can be extended is the beginning of the 2020-2021 school year. The governing body must determine that complying with the initial February 2020 deadline would present an increased risk to students, staff, or visitors due to the absence of the guard or that the hardship is due to deployment or active military service, illness, family emergency, death in the immediate family, or other approved leave of absence that would prevent the guard from complying with the training deadline.
As for state grants to support safety school safety programs, the grant program is closed for this year, and the announced awards will be made in February. The program opens again in the Fall of 2020, so we expect the next application period to begin in September or October of 2020. PAIS will apprise you of this at the appropriate time.