Congressman Jim Banks (IN-03)

Rep. Jim Banks Introduces Child Safety Account Program

Washington, DC – Congressman Jim Banks (R-IN), introduced legislation that would establish a Child Safety Account (CSA) program for students facing safety issues at school. These accounts could be used for alternative education options so that no student would be forced to attend school in an unsafe environment. While the federal government only has jurisdiction over the Washington, D.C. school system, this legislation will serve as a model for states and localities seeking alternative solutions in ensuring that every child has access to safe schools.

Said Rep. Banks, “School safety and the wellbeing of children is every parent’s number one concern.  In today’s complex world, school safety problems have become more prevalent. Unfortunately, too many students are trapped in unsafe schools.  This Child Safety Account program will give families choices to pursue educational opportunities that keep their children safe and secure.  While the scope of this bill is currently restricted to one city, it is my hope that the success of the program inspires more states to adopt similar policies and help children feel safe and free to learn at school.”


Under this program, parents/guardians of students facing safety issues such as those listed below could submit a request to school administrators for a CSA.

Applicable safety issues:

  • Bullying,
  • Sexual Harassment, Abuse, and/or Misconduct,
  • Gang Activity,
  • Fights,
  • Suicide Attempts or Threats,
  • Shootings,
  • Drug Use,
  • Special Safety Needs,
  • Food Safety Needs,
  • Health Related Safety Issues,
  • Acts of Violence against Student, and
  • Other Safety Concerns

Should this claim be deemed to have merit, CSA funding could be used to address some of the following needs:

  • Tuition,
  • Textbooks,
  • Tutoring,
  • Transportation to and from a qualified school,
  • Therapy to cope with a safety incident, and
  • Other required education materials

CSAs would be subject to rigorous oversight and means testing to limit system abuse:

  • Less than 185% of poverty = 90% of DC uniform per student funding formula;
  • 185% – 300% of poverty = 85% of DC uniform per student funding formula; and
  • More than 300% of poverty = 80% of DC uniform per student funding formula

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