School Officials Readying to Submit Grant Application

Superintendent Janet Robinson says a she will ask for additional years of coverage due to the uniqueness of Newtown's situation.


Superintendent Janet Robinson says the school district's plan to apply for a grant through Project SERV (School Emergency Response to Violence) has almost come to fruition, although it's been delayed along the way as school officials decide what belongs in the request and what doesn't.

"We expected to have it done before, but things keep coming up that we think should be included," she said. She added that "nothing has been removed," although the district didn't include items it wasn't able to make a good rationale for.

At a Feb. 5 Board of Education meeting, Robinson had said the grant would go out within the week.

Robinson is in California today for the American Associate of School Administrators conference. While there, she says she will have a meeting with psychologist Melissa Brymer with the National Center for Child Traumatic Stress at the University of California-San Diego. Rymer previously worked on similar grant applications afte the Oklahoma City bombing, Robinson said.

She says the district expects to finalize and submit the application by Friday. Specific numbers won't be available for a few days. But there are a number of definites in the request.

"Anything related to recovery: What is it we need to recover?" she said. "We're looking at guidance counselors. We're looking at additional security people, so people can feel comfortable. We're also looking at a coordinator of mental health services."

The grant would also provide for a coordinator at the central level to handle the logistics of all the district's new intakes.

"It allows you to replenish some of those costs we're going through right this minute," like a replacement assistant principal, said Robinson.

SERV grants typically last for fifteen months, with a three-month extension.

"Because this is such a serious situation, we are going to ask that this deadline be extended to four years," said Robinson. "We can ask, right?"

Robinson says she isn't aware of the timespan for the grant ever being extended, especially by so long.

"This is unprecedented," said Superintendent Janet Robinson. "So we need to talk about unprecedented recovery."

Project SERV is a program of the United States Department of Education. It is designed "to help [schools] recover from a violent or traumatic event in which the learning environment has been disrupted," according to its web site.

Why? February 26, 2013 at 12:25 AM
So even if she leaves, everything will still be her fault! I hope you all find what you're looking for.
Dart February 26, 2013 at 01:45 AM
Sometimes it's the ship builder's fault.... Sometimes, if the retired captains had been ignoring issues for years, it could be partly their fault.,,,, And sometimes it is never completely understood because it is horrifically incomprehensible.
Dart February 26, 2013 at 04:00 PM
I think you misunderstood the point I was trying to make. It is as inappropriate as Yoda continuing to claim that JRobinson somehow "failed" the shooter. I don't think any of the superintendents failed, singling out one who was not in the position until after the mother took him out of the school system does not make any sense. Some posters continue to use this tragedy as an opportunity to bash Robinson. Now that she is leaving, it is a moot point. I didn't mean to insult or offend. Just trying to keep things factual.
Freddy February 26, 2013 at 07:13 PM
@yoda - I don't think she's done a terrible job post tragedy. My feelings about her were cemented during the items that you listed. I have no problems with her contract not being renewed and her understanding that it is time to move along to another district without us having to fire her and pay her severance.
Newtown Resident and Teacher February 26, 2013 at 10:09 PM
yoda, You said, "JR one question to you how did you fail Adam???" LongTime Resident is simply pointing out that a. You can't blame JR for a student who had been removed from the school system when she was the super, and b. If you insist on blaming a super, then the previous supers would be more appropriate to target.


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