Gov. Bill Haslam named a 17-member working group Monday to review school safety in Tennessee in response to last month’s deadly shooting rampage at a Florida high school.
The list includes leaders from his administration and the state legislature, as well as from the fields of safety, education, and mental health. The panel will be chaired by David Purkey, commissioner of the state Department of Safety and Homeland Security.
The group will begin its work this week and offer its first recommendations before the legislature adjourns this spring.
Haslam said last week that the group’s recommendations could impact the state’s budget for the fiscal year that begins July 1. The governor will submit a supplement to his proposed budget in a few weeks.
“All children in Tennessee deserve to learn in a safe and secure environment and I am asking this working group to move quickly in making practical recommendations that we can implement in the coming weeks and months to help increase the safety of our children,” Haslam said in a statement. “The review will be wide ranging but include specific items, such as entry to and exit from schools, training and availability of school resource officers, and in-school mental health resources for students.”
Here are the members of the Governor’s School Safety Working Group:
- Greg Adams, chief operating officer, Office of the Governor
- Sen. Paul Bailey, R-Sparta
- Rep. David Byrd, retired principal, R-Waynesboro
- Sen. Dolores Gresham, chairwoman, Senate Education Committee, R-Somerville
- Sheriff John Fuson, Montgomery County Sheriff’s Department
- Mike Herrmann, executive director of conditions for learning, Department of Education
- Sgt. Jeff Hicks, school resource officer supervisor, Blount County Sheriff’s Office
- Lt. Gen. Keith Huber, U.S. Army, retired
- Abbey Kidwell, teacher, South Clinton Elementary School, Clinton City Schools
- Candice McQueen, commissioner, Department of Education
- Cindy Minnis, school psychologist, Metro Nashville Public Schools
- Jack Parton, superintendent, Sevier County Schools
- David Purkey, commissioner, Department of Safety and Homeland Security
- Dr. Altha Stewart, University of Tennessee, incoming President of American Psychiatric Association
- Sonia Stewart, principal, Pearl-Cohn Entertainment Magnet High School, Metro Nashville Public Schools
- Marie Williams, commissioner, Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services
- Rep. Ryan Williams, R-Cookeville