State Senator Bob Mensch is proud of many things about his 24th district, which covers parts of Berks, Bucks and Montgomery Cos. You can put schools high on that list.
“I’m very blessed,” he said. “I have some fantastic schools—public, private and parochial.”
I met with Mensch in front of the Mater Dei Catholic Elementary School in Lansdale. Mater Dei was one of nine PA schools named last fall as a Blue Ribbon School of Excellence by the U.S. Department of Education. All nine were Catholic elementary schools in the Philadelphia Archdiocese.
“It is a very special recognition,” Mensch said of Mater Dei. “If you look at their service to the community over the years, they focus on excellence in education and they work with their students to be involved in the community. It helps us provide leaders for the future.”
Senator Mensch also announced in the fall that eleven area school districts were awarded $25,000 each in state grants to help improve school safety. Those districts were Brandywine Heights, Oley Valley, Palisades, Quakertown, Boyertown, North Penn, Perkiomen Valley, Pottstown, Pottsgrove, Souderton and Upper Perkiomen.
“I supported the creation of this new grant program because a safe and secure learning environment is vital for providing students with a high-quality education,” Mensch said. “They can use that money to install cameras, of if they want to harden the access to the school or hire security guards.”
Mensch said recent hearings across the state with students revealed the importance of security in the minds of students. One of those hearings was held in Quakertown.
“The students talked about their mental concerns…the trauma when they hear about security issues in other schools. We need to make the students understand that we want to see safe schools as much as they do.”