Petersburg ISD Superintendent: Arming teachers good for some sch

Petersburg ISD Superintendent: Arming teachers good for some schools, not others

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In Governor Abbott's School and Firearm Safety Action Plan he released Wednesday, he had 40 points to protect your kids in the classroom. 

In his plan it expands the school marshal program which allows some teachers to arm themselves while in the classroom. 

Petersburg ISD already participates in the program. The system has a handful of teachers who are armed. 

"We take the approach that it's better to be proactive than reactive," said Drew Howard, Superintendent of Petersburg ISD. 

Across its campuses there are signs warning any potential intruder that teachers and staff are armed and my use whatever force is necessary to eliminate a threat.

"I've heard nothing but 100 percent support and I'm sure there's different opinions out there but from what I've heard and the support and the feedback we've received everybody feels like this is a better way to protect our kids and keep our kids safe and again to take that proactive measure," Howard said.

The Governor's plan to expand the program is not welcomed by all though. 

"We do not believe as an organization that teachers should be armed in the classroom," said Lauren Kern, Legislative Vice President for the Lubbock Educators Association. "As a teacher I feel like I went into this profession to nurture kids and to take care of kids so I believe that there should be a solution, I don't believe arming teachers is the solution."

Howard said there is no one-size-fits-all solution though. For Petersberg, he said arming teachers works best because the district cannot afford to have its own police departments.

"You know setting some more guidelines are fine but each local school district needs to look at its priorities and focus in on how it can best serve those kids in these communities," he said.

He said he realizes what works best at his will not work best for others and warns against a uniform approach to school security.

"Every place, every school district has its own unique situation and own unique ways of going about solving those but you've got to, you have to develop that culture and have that atmosphere that provides a good learning environment so doing that while at the same time keeping kids safe that's a delicate balance and we've got to promote both and move both to a top priority."

The Governor announced funding for school marshal training will be available this Summer, however expanding the program will take legislative approval.

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