A school board in Iowa has voted to allow some staff to carry firearms while at school.
One Northwest school district in Cherokee County, Iowa, has become the second district in the state to vote on a measure allowing teachers to be armed on school grounds, according to KCRG News.
Cherokee Schools Superintendent Kim Lingenfelter said that discussions about the measure began in July of this year, and included input from law enforcement officers, among others.
“No one wants guns in school, but we want bad guys with a gun even less,” Lingenfelter said. “And the board has taken a very measured and serious approach to the challenge of keeping students safe and staff.”
The district also told local news that it will keep a list of teachers who would like to be trained to carry a weapon, and all staff that carry a firearm in the Cherokee County schools will receive monthly training.
Parents and teachers spoke at the board meeting both for and against the policy ahead of the vote that occurred Monday. Thirty-two people voted in favor of changing the policy and 11 people opposed the change, per Siouxland News.
“I just think of the difference it could have made at Sandy Hook, or in Texas,” one parent, who favored the change, said, according to Siouxland News.
Another speaker, Larry Pigott, grandfather of 11 kids in the school district, said, “I think they should be afforded that safety that government and politicians have,” adding, “I feel that is a necessity due to the times that we are living in.”
This move comes months after an August announcement by the Madison County Schools in North Carolina. The school board said it plans to secure school safety by putting AR-15 rifles in emergency safes throughout county schools, as the Ashville Citizen Times reported.
“The reason we put the breaching tools in the safes is that in the event we have someone barricaded in a door, we won’t have to wait on the fire department to get there,” Madison County Sheriff Buddy Harwood said.
Harwood added: “We’ll have those tools to be able to breach that door if needed. I do not want to have to run back out to the car to grab an AR, because that’s time lost. Hopefully, we’ll never need it, but I want my guys to be as prepared as prepared can be.”
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