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Governor DeSantis announces an additional $40 million to protect Jewish day schools, HBCUs

Governor DeSantis speaks at the University of Florida campus.
Governor Ron DeSantis Facebook Screenshot
Governor DeSantis speaks at the University of Florida campus.

Governor Ron DeSantis announced Wednesday, May 8, additional funding aimed at securing Jewish day schools and historically Black colleges and universities.

In January, the DeSantis administration announced 134 Jewish day schools in the state had received $25 million dollars to increase security measures on campuses.

The move followed the governor calling a special legislative session to ensure the protection of Jewish students amidst rising antisemitism following the start of the Israel-Hamas war.

Now, the governor said he’s approved additional money in the state budget to make Jewish day schools safer, as Pro-Palestine protests continue across the state.

“I'm here to be able to say that we are also going to support an additional $20 million to continue our support of Jewish day schools in the upcoming 2024-2025 fiscal year budget. This is important for school safety,” DeSantis said.

In addition, the governor said he’s approved $20 million to improve safety at HBCUs in the state following a string of bomb threats in 2022 and 2023.

“Now we have under our purview, Florida A&M, but you also have HBCUs that are private, and we're helping work with all of them, whether public and private, in school school security measures,” DeSantis said.

The governor said almost $570 million in his budget this year will go toward school safety and security measures on campuses throughout the state.

The governor also signed into law a bill that will make it easier for law enforcement officers to become school guardians.

The new law mandates instruction around how to use the Fortify Florida tool to report school threats, and bans the operation of drones over school campuses.

Read the legislation here:

Danielle Prieur covers education in Central Florida.
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