MT. VERNON (WSIL) -- Schools in Jefferson County are looking for new safety measures, after being awarded a federal grant.
Summersville Grade School Superintendent, Mike Denault, says he wasn't having any luck applying for federal security infrastructure grants.
That is until he decided to work with Sheriff Jeff Bullard to increase the number of students that would benefit from the money.
"So at that point I met with the Sheriff, I talked with him about maybe trying to write the grant for all of the county schools in Jefferson County."
"And earlier this week we found out we were awarded just shy of half a million dollars to help Jefferson County schools with infrastructure to help them be safer," says Bullard.
"Key fob systems at all of our entrances, panic buttons in the classrooms, safety film on all of the windows, exterior and interior windows, interior door locks," says Denault.
"Reinforcing doors, increasing communications with radio purchases, improving intercom systems," adds Bullard.
Denault says 11 school districts, and nearly 5,600 students will benefit from the grant.
"And that's all the schools in Jefferson County, I mean this is something that's going to benefit almost every student in Jefferson County."
"There's a lot of pie in the sky ideas out there and a lot of theories, that in reality, they just don't hold water. I believe what the schools here are doing in Jefferson County through this grant are realistic solutions that will help keep their students safe," says Bullard.
The grant was dispersed through a Department of Justice School Violence Prevention Program -- that U.S. Representative Mike Bost (R-Murphysboro) introduced in 2018.