Batesville is the latest in what is likely to be a long list of school districts opting to put more guns on campus in the hands of staff members who’ve undergone a state training course. KARK reports.
A note circulating in the district to staff says this is an outgrowth of recommendations of the governor’s school safety task force. Nothing has been formalized from that work, but
Superintendent Michael Hester says the candidates will have to complete 110 hours of training, tests, certifications and go through intense physical and psychological evaluations before they are even considered.
“It’s not like a staff member shows up and says they want to carry,” says Hester. “They have to go through all the rigor of a county deputy.”
Hester says it’s sad that it’s come to this, but it’s all in the name of safety.
“We think putting the appropriate weapons in the appropriate hands is the best answer we can come up with at this point,” says Hester.
Some parents aren’t so sure. Said parent Jennifer Pitts:
“I really believe what we need to do is give teachers the room to do what they do best which is to provide a nurturing environment for our kids and not pull double duty as a security guard.”
School resource officers cost money, however. Teachers and other staff members have plenty of spare time to serve as armed guards as well as perform other tasks apparently.