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Arming Teachers to Protect Schools

The debate about arming teachers to protect schools is getting a lot of attention. One Ohio Group says we owe it to the teachers and they're paying to train them how to shoot.

It's a tree-day firearms-training class through the Buckeye Firearms Association. The Armed Teacher Pilot Program will be at the Tactical Defense Institute in West Union.

The Organization says they hope to provide the skills and mindset to save kids lives. They plan to run the pilot class, review it with students and state officials and then add more trainings.

"What we want to do is, it doesn't end at this class, the demand far exceeds 24, obviously that doesn't do a big enough deterrent. Run a pilot class then analyze our results, talk to the students, see did this work for you, did we hit the mark on the class. Make any adjustments that we need to do and then roll it out to the rest of the state or even nation," explains Chairman of the Buckeye Firearms Association, Jim Irvine.

The organizations has 24 openings for the pilot class and they say they've gotten hundreds of application. Of the 24 they say it will be school administrators, teachers, and even maintenance from all of the state.

"You want every school to be able to have... somebody with skills. And you know what, it could be that someone finishes up this class and goes, I really, I still can't do it or I can't get permission, or this isn't going to work, but they're still going to take away some other mind set things they can use in their schools to keep kids safe. They're going to take away some casualty care, treating wounded that will make kids safer."

The foundation says anyone that works in the school environment can apply, teachers, administrators, even maintenance.
And everyone in training is completely volunteering.
They say they've been working on the program for years and it's now there is a big push for it.

"It's something that I and other people have been interested in for years, we've been looking at to because of mass killings, knowing that schools are targets, knowing that our kids are at risk. It's something that we've been looking at for a long time but the events of Newtown, Connecticut and those killings there really spurred everyone else into saying, 'Really you guys are already been looking at this, you're working on it? -- yes.'"

The Foundations expects to spend around $1,000 per student for those 3 days.
They plan on raising money to conduct future classes.
"It's because our schools and our teachers simply don't have the money to go into this training. We have an educational foundation and this is a perfect use of funds."

Currently, Ohio law allows only law enforcement or someone approved by the school board to carry a gun in schools. That is also up for discussion in Ohio as well.

Attorney General Mike DeWine suggested schools think about arming each school with at least one gun and said he planned to have trainings at the state police academy for teachers as well. The two trainings are not related.


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