School Safety Task Force Announcement

Published: September 12th, 2019

Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction Kathy Hoffman today announced the members of the Arizona Department of Education’s School Safety Task Force. The task force was created in partnership with March for Our Lives AZ after attempts to create such a task force failed at the Legislature during the last legislative session. “I’m honored to partner with March for Our Lives AZ, as well as our other task force members, to develop a comprehensive, research-based approach to school safety,” said Superintendent Hoffman. “The Department has spent this summer in preparation and planning mode, as well as identifying members to serve on the task force — now we’re ready to get to work.”

The task force will hold its first meeting on Monday, September 16 at the Department of Education. The task force will meet monthly, with a goal of completing its work in one year.

Largely modeled after HB2597, introduced by Representative Daniel Hernandez (LD-2), the task force will focus on the following objectives:

  • Identify a unifying, research-based approach to school safety
  • Create a model school safety plan for use by schools and districts
  • Develop a list or clearinghouse of school safety resources
  • Research the value and impact of an anonymous school safety tip line, as well as additional evidence-based, best practices
  • Create an outline of potential legislative proposals to address school safety

The task force is made up of students, school administrators, community members, advocacy groups, and law enforcement representatives. Arizona Department of Education staffers will support the work of the task force.

Task Force Members and Organizations:

  • March for Our Lives AZ
  • Maricopa County Sheriff Paul Penzone
  • Andrew Chavez, Carl Hayden High School
  • Dr. Ember Conley, Mesa Public Schools
  • Janelle Wood, Black Mothers Forum
  • Arcy Cornidez, National Alliance on Mental Illness/Southern AZ Chapter
  • Stephen Leonard, Washington High School/Glendale Union High School District
  • Carol Landauer, Mental Health Coalition of Verde Valley
  • Chris Kotterman, Arizona School Boards Association
  • David Martinez III, Vitalyst Health Foundation
  • Dr. Kris Bosworth, University of Arizona
  • Jessica J. Summers, University of Arizona College of Education
  • Jose Patino, Aliento AZ
  • Julie Kent-Partridge, Washington Elementary School District
  • Kelli Donley Williams, AHCCCS Suicide Prevention Specialist
  • Larry Ross, HOPE College and Career Readiness Academy
  • Linda McCollum, Pima County Attorney’s Office
  • Reid Swan, Flagstaff Unified School District
  • Richard Moore, Academy of Tucson High School
  • Sarah Lindstrom Johnson, Arizona State University Sanford School of Social and Family Dynamics
  • Skyler Tuholsky-Froke, GLSEN
  • Stephen Dieu, School Resource Officer and Chandler Police Department Officer
  • Tammy Hille, Tucson Unified School District
  • Alyssa Tarkington, Phoenix Union High School District