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School safety bill advances in Mississippi House

(AP) — A bill meant to make Mississippi schools safer from mass shootings and other threats is advancing.

The House Education Committee on Thursday passed House Bill 1283, sending it to the full House for more consideration.

The plan would require safety inspections and twice-yearly active shooter drills at public schools. It would also create a threat-reporting mechanism to be monitored by three dedicated analysts at the state Department of Public Safety.

A task force convened by Gov. Phil Bryant recommended that every school have a school resource officer. State Rep. Mark Baker, a Brandon Republican sponsoring the bill, says he wants to expand a cost-sharing program to encourage that goal, but it’s unclear if lawmakers will provide enough money.

The legislation doesn’t include a task force recommendation to sometimes arm teachers.