The Australian government is spending $18 million putting security guards outside 54 schools

Al Zahra College in Arncliffe.

The Abbott government has announced $18 million on boosting security at 54 schools across Australia.

It’s the first time the federal government has agreed to pay for security at schools considered at high risk of a terrorist attack or ethnic violence.

The money will be used to fund security guards and cameras to protect students.

Justice Minister Michael Keenan announced the new program at Al Zahra College in Sydney today.

Half the schools involved in the program are Islamic or Jewish, with 29 in NSW and 15 in Victoria.

While there has not be a direct threat, Keenan says the program is a “confidence-building measure”.

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