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House honors Covenant victims,  advances bills improving school safety

The House chamber paused on Thursday , March 27th to remember the victims of the Covenant School shooting one year after the  horrific  tragedy that claimed six innocent lives. House Joint Resolution 1142 honors the  memories of the three students and three adults who were killed – Evelyn Marie Dieckhaus, Hallie Scruggs, William Kinney, Dr. Katherine Koonce,  Cynthia Broyles Peak and Michael “Mike” Hill. The Metro Nashville Police  Department, the Nashville Fire Department, and the Nashville Department of  Emergency Communications 911 staff were also commended. 

The Covenant tragedy turned a heavy spotlight on school safety in the Volunteer  State. Since 2018, Republicans have invested more than $780 million to make  Tennessee public schools safer. 

Law makers in 2024 continue to build on the investments. Most notably, these  measures build on investments made through the School Safety Act of 2023, which enacted a multi-tiered plan and provided a school resource officer for every public school.  The  General Assembly also approved $30 million for safety grants for higher education  institutions during the special session on safety in August 2023. 

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