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Bill that would require all NC public schools to have threat assessment teams passes House Ed. Committee

Empty classroom with no students
Empty classroom with no students

The North Carolina House Education Committee has approved a bill that would require all public schools to create threat assessment teams.

With a renewed focus on school shootings, the goal is to bring together teachers, counselors, coaches, school resource officers and anyone else who might notice changes in student behavior that could signal trouble.

Lead sponsor John Torbett, a Gaston County Republican, said the teams would identify students who might harm themselves or others – or who simply need support in a personal crisis.

“It’s been proven that by implementation of this it can reduce the cause of one taking their own life, which is a huge issue that we’re addressing,” he said, “It reduces bullying. It reduces anything that impacts a child to put that child in an unsafe place.”

He added that if there’s imminent threat of harm, “Then police would immediately do what they could to alleviate that threat. I know that, because we see that going on. My hopes and prayers is that we catch this at an early enough stage that they can just simply be provided the professional care that they need to get over whatever concern or issue it is.”

The committee approved the proposal on a voice vote. It would require approval by the full House and Senate to become law.