June 2023 School Safety Community Bulletin: Events, Opportunities, and Resources

School Safety Events and Opportunities

June 2023

Latest News

Access Resources and Best Practices to Protect Against Cybersecurity and Online Safety Threats
June marks Internet Safety Month and the start of summer break for many K-12 schools. Because malicious cyber actors can take advantage of holidays or breaks to launch cyberattacks, it is especially important for school administrators and staff to stay vigilant over the next few months. There are simple steps all members of the community can take to be cyber safe, and K-12 schools can find specific, action-oriented guidance in this report from the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency. Parents, guardians, educators, and students can also learn more about online safety and find tips and resources in SchoolSafety.gov’s new infographic.

New Actions Announced to Protect Youth Mental Health, Safety, and Privacy Online
The Biden-Harris Administration recently announced several new actions to safeguard children’s privacy, health, and safety from online harms. These actions include the creation of a new interagency Task Force on Kids Online Health & Safety; the development of resources, model policies, and voluntary best practices for school districts on the use of internet-enabled devices; promotion and enhancement of the privacy of minor students’ data; and efforts to prevent online harassment and abuse of children and youth. This announcement builds upon the U.S. Surgeon General’s recent Advisory on Social Media and Youth Mental Health, which found that while social media may offer some benefits, there are ample indicators that it can also pose a risk of harm to the mental health and well-being of children and adolescents.

ED and HHS Award Funding to Support Student Mental Health and Wellness
The U.S. Department of Education (ED) and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced new awards and funding to tackle the mental health crisis in K-12 schools. Funding included ED’s recent announcement of more than $95 million in awards across 35 states to increase access to school-based mental health services and strengthen the pipeline of mental health professionals in high-needs school districts. HHS also awarded $3.6 million under the Garrett Lee Smith State/Tribal Youth Suicide Prevention and Early Intervention Program, which supports states and tribes with implementing youth suicide prevention and early intervention strategies in schools, institutions of higher education, and other child and youth-serving organizations.

DHS Releases Summary of Critical Terrorism Information and Related Resources
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued a National Terrorism Advisory System (NTAS) Bulletin at the end of May regarding the continued heightened threat environment across the United States. According to the bulletin, likely targets of potential violence include U.S. critical infrastructure, faith-based institutions, individuals or events associated with the LGBTQIA+ community, and schools. The NTAS Bulletin communicates critical terrorism information and provides resources to help keep communities safe. Read the full bulletin, and access school-specific resources here.

Upcoming Events and Opportunities

Grants and Funding Opportunities

Children and Youth Resilience Challenge (Deadline: July 7)

Project SERV (Ongoing)

Visit the SchoolSafety.gov Grants Finder Tool for additional school safety-related funding opportunities.

Events, Webinars, and Conferences

HHS Children and Youth Resilience Challenge Informational Webinar (June 21) – This webinar, hosted by the HHS Administration for Children and Families, will provide information about the Children and Youth Resilience Challenge, a new HHS initiative that will provide $1 million in funding for innovative community-led solutions to promote resilience in children and adolescents affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and other disasters. The webinar is intended to help interested entrants prepare their submissions.

Visit the SchoolSafety.gov Events Page for additional school safety-related webinars, conferences, and more.

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School Safety Resources

Child Exploitation Resources

This tip line is the nation’s centralized reporting system for the potential or suspected online exploitation of children. Members of the public and electronic service providers can make reports of child sexual exploitation by submitting an online form or by calling 1-800-THE-LOST.

Information on Child Sex Trafficking
This webpage provides an overview of child sex trafficking, its risk factors, recent data and trends, and resources and training available to prevent and identify exploitation and support victims.

Additional School Safety Resources

Disaster Distress Helpline
This service provides 24/7, 365-day-a-year crisis counseling and support to people experiencing emotional distress related to natural or human-caused disasters.

Moving Beyond Change Efforts: Evidence and Action to Support and Affirm LGBTQI+ Youth
This report provides behavioral health professionals, researchers, policymakers and other audiences with a comprehensive research overview and accurate information about effective and ineffective therapeutic practices related to youth of diverse sexual orientation and gender identity.

#StopRansomware Guide
This recently updated guide serves as a one-stop resource to help organizations, including schools, reduce the risk of ransomware incidents through best practices to detect, prevent, respond, and recover, including step-by-step approaches to address potential attacks.

Treatment for Suicidal Ideation, Self-Harm, and Suicide Attempts Among Youth
This guide provides interventions to treat for suicidal ideation, self-harm, and suicide attempts among youth. It includes research on implementation and examples of the ways that these recommendations can be implemented.

Visit SchoolSafety.gov for additional resources to support school safety and security efforts.

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If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions for future newsletters, please contact us at SchoolSafety@hq.dhs.gov. Follow @SchoolSafetyGov on Twitter for additional school safety updates.

SchoolSafety.gov Disclaimer
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), U.S. Department of Education (ED), U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) do not endorse any individual, enterprise, product, or service. DHS, ED, DOJ, and HHS do not mandate or prescribe practices, models, or other activities described in this communication. DHS, ED, DOJ, and HHS do not control or guarantee the accuracy, relevance, timeliness, or completeness of any information outside of those respective Departments, and the opinions expressed in any of these materials do not necessarily reflect the positions or policies of DHS, ED, DOJ, and HHS.