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Three Districts to Share $10 Million Federal Grant
Money to be used for safety and mental health education

OLYMPIA — October 6, 2014 — About one out of every six students in Washington have at least one emotional, behavioral or developmental condition. A federal grant recently awarded to the state will target those students, as well as any others, for help.

The five-year federal grant, called Project AWARE, was awarded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). The $1.95 million a year Washington will receive will fund a number of activities, including:

  • building and expanding the capacity of state educational agencies to make schools safer,
  • improving school climate,
  • increasing awareness of mental health issues among youth and
  • providing training for school personnel and other adults to detect and respond to mental health issues in children and youth.

“Making sure students are safe, and that we can get them mental help information and help if they need it, is extremely important – not just to education, but to our communities as well,” said State Superintendent Randy Dorn. “This grant will help us expand the services we have, and create new services.”

A total of three districts – Battle Ground, Marysville and Shelton – will share the grant award. The districts were chosen based on need and their readiness to benefit from the grant.

Project AWARE brings together students, parents, educators, mental health providers, local law enforcement and juvenile justice agencies, as well as other community-based organizations, to talk about mental health promotion, school climate and violence prevention. The awarded districts and its partners will work to create a safe school environment that provides mental health services to students in need, addresses violence prevention, and establishes safe school policies.

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About OSPI
The Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) is the primary agency charged with overseeing K–12 education in Washington state. Led by State School Superintendent Randy Dorn, OSPI works with the state’s 295 school districts and nine educational service districts to administer basic education programs and implement education reform on behalf of more than one million public school students.

OSPI provides equal access to all programs and services without discrimination based on sex, race, creed, religion, color, national origin, age, honorably discharged veteran or military status, sexual orientation, gender expression or identity, the presence of any sensory, mental, or physical disability, or the use of a trained dog guide or service animal by a person with a disability. Questions and complaints of alleged discrimination should be directed to the Equity and Civil Rights Director at (360) 725-6162 or P.O. Box 47200, Olympia, WA 98504-7200.

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Nathan Olson
OSPI Communications Manager
(360) 725-6015

The OSPI Communications Office serves as the central point of contact for local, regional and national media covering K-12 education issues.

Communications Manager
Nathan Olson
(360) 725-6015


   Updated 10/6/2014

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