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Three new programs for Oklahoma schools

Posted at 6:30 PM, Oct 24, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-24 19:33:11-04

TULSA, Okla. — A crisis team, bullying prevention… and a new tip-line app.

The money comes from a U.S. Department of Justice grant, totaling in $1.7 million.

A crisis team is one of three programs that will be used from the total grant, including two positions, a licensed school counselor and a school psychologist.

They'll oversee a strike teams sent to school emergencies across the state.

The second grant is almost half a million dollars to hire a full time anti-bullying specialist, giving parents and victims of bullying a person to turn to.

The last grant Is $250,000 is for an app.

Allowing anyone to report anonymous images, videos, or concerns.

Robyn Miller is with the State Department of Education.

She hopes these programs will be successful.

"We need all the resources and help we can get," Ferguson-Palmer said. "But $1.7 million for the whole state is not going to do very much to be honest."

Tulsa Classroom Teachers Association President Ferguson-Palmer says she's not sure that these new teams will make a difference in Tulsa Public Schools.

"It has to be based in the building," Ferguson said. "You are not going to have much of an affect if you don't have a relationship with the students."

Robyn Miller works for state department of education and she agrees.

"It's about relationships and knowing the students on a day to day basis," Miller said. "So that is where we are going to rely on the district."

Miller says the three programs will work closely with districts, schools, counselors and more.

Anyone who could help them depending on the emergency.

"We would come along side, I mean we certainly are not going to come in and take over any scenario we know that is not the best way to handle things," Miller said.

Ferguson miller says she believes the teachers, faculty, and staff should be more involved in this process.

"So what we need to be doing is training the people who are already in the schools not creating some, you know big title," Ferguson said.

Miller says the focus needs to be on the students.

"In order to have a high quality learning experience in the classroom, they first need to feel safe," Miller said.

The Department of Education plans to have these programs up and running by January.

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