Florida Supreme Court Convenes Grand Jury On School Safety

Feb 25, 2019

The Florida Supreme Court granted Gov. Ron DeSantis' request to impanel a grand jury on school safety.
Credit Nick Evans / WFSU

The Florida Supreme Court is moving ahead with a plan to convene a statewide grand jury on school safety. 

Finding “good and sufficient reason,” the state’s highest court unanimously approved the request Monday to investigate school safety procedures.

The grand jury is charged with determining "whether refusal or failure to follow the mandates of school-related safety laws...results in unnecessary and avoidable risk to students across the state."

It will also look into whether districts are using funds as intended and accurately reporting criminal activity to the state Department of Education.

The investigation will last for 12 months, and will run throughout the state.  Members of the jury will be drawn from Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties.

Chief Judge Jack B. Tuter Jr. of the 17th Judicial Circuit will serve as the presiding judge.

Gov. Ron DeSantis asked the Supreme Court earlier this month to impanel the grand jury. He said he is pleased with the solution and he hopes the court will "identify failures and recommend solutions to keep students, faculty and staff safe."

Though similar to the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Commission, this investigation carries the force of law. The jury has the power to hand out indictments if criminal activity is found. 

Read the full order here.

For more news updates, follow Shawn Mulcahy on Twitter: @ShawnDMulcahy.