NEW YORK (WWTI) – Governor Kathy Hochul signed the “Safe Schools by Design Act,” which will require all school districts’ five-year capital facilities plans to consider including design principles that will ensure a safe, secure and healthy school environment. 

“A safe school environment is an essential component to providing the best education for our students,” 

Governor Kathy Hochul 

 The Act also expands eligible expenses for Extended Day and School Violence Prevention Grants to include programs that encourage community involvement in school facility planning. Currently, the law requires that five-year capital facilities plans are developed by each school district to include: 

  • A building inventory; 
  • Estimated expenses for building construction, repairs, or renovation; and 
  • Estimated expenses for building maintenance and energy consumption.  

Legislation S.2629A/A.286A amends the education law by requiring that school districts consider the inclusion of design principles and strategies, as advised by the Commissioner of Education, in their five-year capital plan as part of an all-encompassing approach to providing a healthy, secure and safe school environment.