Ohio forms school safety center to prevent, address threats

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Ohio is creating a school safety center to help prevent and address violence involving schools and students.

Republican Gov. Mike DeWine signed an executive order Wednesday to create the Ohio School Safety Center as a division of Ohio Homeland Security. He says it begins its work Thursday with seven state employees, whose focus is being redirected. They include intelligence analysts scanning social media and websites for threats toward schools.

DeWine says the center also will review school safety plans, promote an existing tip line , help train schools’ threat-assessment teams and share best practices and training opportunities on school safety through a website and an annual summit.

It’s being funded through existing budget allocations.

DeWine also is creating a working group to produce a yearly report about school safety in Ohio.