WASHINGTON, DC - In an effort to improve safety and security at Wilmington-area schools, Delaware's Congressional delegation today announced a $50,000 school safety resource grant to the City of Wilmington. This federal funding, which is administered by the U.S. Department of Justice, was awarded through the Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) Secure Our Schools program, intended to support efforts to improve security at schools. Specifically, the grant will provide up to 50 percent of the total cost for the city to install metal detectors, locks, lighting, and other equipment that can help deter crime. The grants can also be used to cover 50 percent of the cost of security assessments and training. "The safety of our children must always come first and that means making certain our classrooms and schools are secure. This grant will allow local schools to upgrade their security measures and create a safer environment for teachers to teach and students to learn," said Biden, Chairman of the Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime and Drugs. "Without safe schools, teachers cannot effectively teach and students have trouble learning," Carper said. "This funding provides Wilmington schools with the tools they need to provide a positive and safe learning environment." "Schools must be a safe haven for our children, where they can go to learn and grow. Students should not be scared going to school and teachers shouldn't be afraid to teach," said Castle who chairs the Education Reform Subcommittee. "This funding will help deter crime and keep our children safe." When Castle first came to Congress, he was appointed by the Speaker to help negotiate the votes to pass the 1994 Crime Bill, which includes the COPS Program. In addition to funding school safety projects, the COPS program, which was authored by Senator Biden as part of the 1994 Crime Bill, supports innovative local community policing initiatives, funds the purchase of crime-fighting technology, provides training and technical assistance resources, and funds the hiring of local law enforcement officers. To date, Delaware has received over $21 million in COPS funding to help hire an additional 220 new officers to advance community policing.