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Ohio's AG says arming teachers is a local decision that he would consider
DeWine ays training and local control are key

Jo Ingles
The February shootings at Chardon High School led to a task force and requirement for Ohio school safety plans.
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Ohio’s top cop says his office will be giving schools throughout the state more opportunities for teacher training on school safety issues. And as Ohio Public Radio’s Jo Ingles reports, Attorney General Mike DeWine says it’s up to local school boards to decide if they want teachers and administrators to carry guns.

INGLES: Ohio school safety

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Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine says he wants to give teachers the tools they need to prevent or deal with school shootings.

“ The truth is that while we train first responders, the real first responders in these tragedies are teachers.  They are the ones who are there.  They are the ones who make the life and death decisions.  They are the ones who are going to do what they can do to save lives.  By the time the first responders get there, we may have a number of children killed.”

 So DeWine is offering training course for teachers, and just the description of it can be chilling.

“It’s an active-shooter for educators course or maybe a better way of saying it is, ‘How you deal with an active shooter if you are an educator.’”

DeWine says the course will be a partnership among law enforcement, school leaders and individual school staff members. 

Should Ohio teachers carrying?
Asked whether he thinks schools should allow teachers or administrators to carry guns to defend themselves in case of an emergency, DeWine said he’d consider it if he were on a local school board. 

“I would seriously consider having someone in that school, maybe an ex-police officer, someone who had significant training who had access to a gun in a school.  But you’d have to be very careful about it.  I’m not saying everyone’s school should be armed, but someone who knows exactly what they are doing and who has that gun under lock and key but can get to it instantly….that’s something that I think I would debate and talk about in that school.”

Local control
 DeWine is quick to say it should be a local decision.

“ Each school is different, with unique needs and has the culture of that community.  ...  We are a state that relies on local schools and communities, and that’s what we believe. 

“My school district where my kids went to school is a very small school district.  Cedarville, Ohio, should be making that decision.  Columbus should be making that decision….not Mike DeWine.”

But plans are required
But DeWine says every school in Ohio must submit a plan to the state for what it would do in the case of an emergency.  He says about 140 still haven’t done that.

DeWine says those plans, along with maps of the schools, are entered into a database that police agencies can access in case of an emergency.  He says his office will be following up with school districts to make sure they do that. 

And he’s calling on school districts to make sure their plans address guidelines from a school safety task force that was formed after the school shooting in Chardon in February.  DeWine says he doubts many in the state have re-evaluated their plans to make sure they meet those new guidelines.  He’s asking them to do that now.


Listener Comments:

Might be better for teachers to be armed and trained than to just have crazy people arming themselves illegally. "The only way to win the next world war is to prevent it." . President Eisenhower

Posted by: Colleen on December 20, 2012 10:12AM
To think this cretin was one step away from the governorship. Yeah, lets bring guns into the schools--great idea.

Posted by: Ray (Akron) on December 20, 2012 6:12AM
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