Three local school districts have been awarded state grants to improve safety and security. Benton Area School District has been awarded nearly $65,000. Southern Columbia is getting nearly $51,000 and Central Columbia will see about $29,500. The money can used for things like hiring school security officers, purchasing security-related technology, completing safety and security assessments, implementing violence prevention education, and offering counseling services for students. The School Safety and Security Grant Program was created by lawmakers in 2018.