ROCKFORD, IL (KFVS) - Illinois Governor Pat Quinn visited a middle school in Rockford to sign three new pieces of legislation that aims to increase safety, crisis planning and security improvements at all schools in the state.
"Nothing is more important than keeping our classrooms safe," Governor Pat Quinn said. "Preparation and knowledge are part of that curriculum, preparing for emergencies we hope will never occur and knowing what to do if confronted with a crisis."
State Senator Bill Cunningham (D-Chicago) and State Representative Lawrence M. Walsh Jr. (D-Elwood) sponsored senate Bill 2710.
"Parents need to have confidence that their children will be safe throughout the school day and kids should be able to focus solely on their studies," State Schools Superintendent Christopher A. Koch said. "These new laws provide the impetus and resources to make schools safer."
The new law extends a key school safety measure that covers public schools to the state's approximately 1,800 private schools.
A law signed last year requires all school districts to conduct an annual safety drill, in conjunction with law enforcement officials that prepares for shooting situations.
Gov. Quinn convened top experts following the 2012 Newton, Connecticut school shooting for a summit to develop short and long-term actions regarding school safety.