Education Department giving Newtown $1.3 million

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Sandy Hook Elementary School

Sandy Hook Elementary School (AP Photo)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Schools in Newtown, Conn., will receive $1.3 million in federal aid to recover after the shootings that left 26 students and educators dead last year.

Education Secretary Arne Duncan planned to announce the School Emergency Response to Violence grant during a visit to the state on Friday.

The grant to Newtown schools was designed to offset costs the district incurred after the December 2012 shooting as well as provide counseling and training for school officials.

“This tragedy has forever changed the entire Newtown community and our country,” Duncan said in remarks prepared for delivery during a noon stop at Hartford’s Classical Magnet School with Connecticut Gov. Dan Malloy.

“While we continue efforts to enact President Obama’s comprehensive approach to make our schools and communities safer, we want to do whatever we can to support ongoing recovery efforts and ensure this community has the resources it needs to meet the needs of its teachers, students and families,” Duncan said.

Duncan, who was part of Vice President Joe Biden’s task force to respond to the shootings in Newtown, also planned to address school safety.

Adam Lanza, 20, killed his mother at their Newtown home before going to Sandy Hook Elementary School. Twenty of the victims were children.

Students have been moved to a remodeled school renamed Sandy Hook Elementary School in the neighboring town of Monroe.

In the wake of the shooting, Congress attempted to tighten gun laws only to be thwarted by the National Rifle Association. A bipartisan bill that would have required background checks fell short, although its Democratic sponsor, Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia, has said he would try again to pass it.

Since 2001, the Education Department has given more than $33.5 million to 106 schools recovering from violence, weather or other disruptive incidents.

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