SPOKANE, Wash. – In an effort to enhance school security, the Spokane school board is considering a plan that would arm 13 school resource officers around the school district.
If the current plan is finalized by the board, resource officers would begin wearing Glock pistols at their side as early as January, reports NWCN.com.
The board previously decided in April to arm the resource officers and is now working out the details.
Like many other school districts around the country, Spokane has been focused on campus safety as a result of the Newtown, Connecticut tragedy last December.
“It’s those outside threats that are driving us to this next level of safety,” district security director Jason Conley was quoted as saying in the news report.
In order to better prepare those being armed, the designated resource officers would be required to participate in weapons training classes, coordinated by the Spokane Police Academy.
Unlike other districts in the state, Spokane would be securing the district using its own employees, rather than partnering with a local police department or sheriff’s office. When districts partner with outside law enforcement agencies, keeping the officers is contingent on the police department’s budget.
“Also, if there was a major police incident, we’d be left vulnerable,” Spokane school superintendent Shelley Redinger told NWCN.com. “When they are our employees, we are their first priority.”
The district is also moving toward approving the addition of more internal door locks to further secure the schools.
By Trevor TenBrink at EAGnews.org