As the summer break winds down, parents are gathering school supplies for their children, teachers are organizing their classrooms and Indiana schools are making some safety improvements due in part to a new state initiative.

Gov. Eric Holcomb and the Indiana Department of Administration are offering hand-held metal detectors to schools at no cost. Traditional public, charter and accredited non-public schools can receive one device for every 250 students. This lets local officials determine how to best utilize the hand-held metal detectors at their schools.

So far, nearly 80 percent of the state’s public schools have requested detectors. These schools will begin receiving the devices by mid-August. Schools still wanting to participate will get their equipment later in the fall. To find out more, click here.

The hand-held metal detectors can be used at school entrances, sporting events and other locations to improve security. These tools are part of a bigger initiative to strengthen school safety, giving school officials the resources to provide a safe learning environment for Hoosier students.

Indiana lawmakers also appropriated an additional $5 million to the Indiana Secured School Safety Grant Fund used to train safety specialists, hire school resource officers and improve building security. This funding is in addition to the nearly $45 million in state grants awarded to local districts for safety upgrades.

For more information on Indiana’s school safety resources, click here.