Bill to provide mental health grants for schools heads to governor

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WAND) – Schools will have the option to apply for money to address mental health issues if Gov. Bruce Rauner signs a bill.

The House approved the bill by a 65-42 vote after making a few changes. Schools would be able to ask for money to pay mental health professionals to come in and help students.

The Illinois Senate also approved the bill.

One major change to the bill involves the removal of a requirement that schools replace armed security guards with unarmed social workers if they want money. State Rep. Emanuel “Chris” Welch, the bill’s sponsor, says investing in mental health is the way to make sure schools stay peaceful. He acknowledged the importance of police officers in safety.

The grant money can’t be used for armed security.

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