Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $1,000,000)
Birmingham City Schools STOP School Violence, AL
This category 2 Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) STOP School Violence project title is Birmingham City Schools STOP School Violence (BCS STOP). Birmingham City Schools (BCS) will serve as fiscal and address two BJA STOP funding areas: Train school personnel and educate students and Hiring school support personnel.
Service Area. BCS is located within the Birmingham Alabama Metropolitan Area. BCS serves high-poverty students in the highest crime infected neighborhoods in the U.S. (top 1%). The violent crime rate in Birmingham of 16.61/1,000 quadruples Alabama (4.44/1,000) and the U.S. (4/1,000).
Eight of BCS schools will participate in BCS STOP, including 6,003 students, with 91% being African American. Forty-three percent of all BCS district behavioral incidents (in forty-three schools) originated from the eight project schools (2019). Student counselor ratios are 750-to-1. Relative student social worker ratios are 1,945-to-1, indicating a significant need for additional school staff support.
Purpose. BCS STOP will address two gaps: (1) Pervasive school and community violence and (2) School personnel and students need support, education, and training on preventing student violence and improving school climate. The goal is to prevent school violence. The objective is to hire support staff and train school personnel and educate students on preventing school violence, including strategies to improve school climate.
Primary Activities and Expected Outcomes.
(A) Hire and train school personnel: Hire qualified support staff and provide universal trainings of personnel to prevent school violence, including learning essential restorative practices elements.
(B) Train select school staff: Select staff will receive advance training in restorative practices to serve as school violence prevention and school climate leaders and resources; some staff will receive training certification for International Institute for Restorative Practices (IIRP) SaferSanerSchools.
(C) Educate students and their parent/caregivers: Trainings include strategies for promoting a positive school climate, antibullying, and available school- and community-based mental health services.
(D) Evaluate school personnel trainings: Assess effectiveness of increasing school personnel content knowledge on school violence prevention and school climate.
(E) Evaluate student and parent/caregiver trainings: Assess effectiveness of preventing school violence.
Intended Beneficiaries. BCS students, parents/caregivers, and staff will be the beneficiaries. BCS STOP does not include subrecipients.