|Argeo Paul Cellucci
Table of Contents
WHEREAS, ensuring the safety of children, families, neighborhoods and schools is a paramount goal in the Commonwealth; and
WHEREAS, a school that is unsafe does not provide a learning environment conducive to achieving high standards; and WHEREAS, about five percent of our secondary students report that they miss school time due to fears for their safety; and
WHEREAS, the tragic, violent events occurring in schools across our nation during the past year raise new questions about the safety of students, educators and staff at our schools in the Commonwealth:
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Argeo Paul Cellucci, Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, by virtue of the authority vested in me as Supreme Executive Magistrate, do hereby order as follows:
Section 1. There is hereby established an inter-agency task force, to be called the Governor's Council On Youth Violence ("the Council"), to review and report on problems of violence in schools throughout the Commonwealth and to recommend practices, policies and programs necessary to ensure safe schools.
Section 2. The Council shall consist of the Secretary of the Executive Office of Public Safety or his designee, who shall serve as chairperson, and eleven other members as follows. The Secretary of the Executive Office of Health and Human Services, the Commissioner of the Department of Public Health, the Commissioner of the Department of Social Services, the Commissioner of the Department of Youth Services, and the Commissioner of Education (or their designees) shall serve ex officio. The remaining members of the Council shall be appointed by the Governor and shall include two district attorneys, a police chief, a mayor, a superintendent of a public school system, and a principal of a secondary school. The appointed members shall serve for renewable one year terms, at the pleasure of the Governor.
The Council shall adopt such guidelines and procedures as are appropriate for the effective performance of its duties. Any procedural issues that may arise during a Council meeting shall be resolved by reference to Robert's Rules of Order. The Council shall meet as often as necessary to receive reports and issue recommendations. The Council may also conduct regional forums or statewide conferences on school safety as it considers appropriate.
Section 3. The Secretary of the Executive Office of Health and Human Services and the Secretary of the Executive Office of Public Safety shall provide such staff as the Council deems necessary. The Council may obtain staff or technical assistance from the Department of Youth Services, the Department of Education and any other executive office, agency or department.
Section 4. The Council shall have the following duties and responsibilities:
a. Develop the protocols for school districts to address disruptive or threatening activities in a school:
b. Review and make recommendations concerning plans developed by education officials, public safety officials, and medical professionals to respond to instances of school violence;
c. Review and make recommendations concerning the availability of alternative schools for chronically disruptive or dangerous students;
d. Analyze municipal, school and state expenditures on school safety to determine whether other allocations are necessary and appropriate;
e. Coordinate with national efforts to identify and address instances of youth violence; and
f. Prepare and submit annual reports of the Council's findings and plans for the further development of policies and programs to ensure safe schools.
Given at the Executive Chamber in Boston this 30th day of July in the year one thousand nine hundred and ninety-eight.
Argeo Paul Cellucci
William Francis Galvin
Secretary of State