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School systems that 'share' resource officers could arm administrators

Under Ivey's new program school systems without school resource officers or school systems that share resource officers could arm administrators.

Posted: May 31, 2018 5:22 PM
Updated: May 31, 2018 5:38 PM

WAAY 31 is pressing the governor's office for clarification on her memorandum to arm school administrators.

Ivey gave the green light for school districts without school resource officers, to train and arm school administrators. Some school districts in North Alabama share resource officers throughout the district. According to the Governor's office, those school districts could apply for the program.

"They really shouldn't do that because they aren't trained," said Herbert Johnson, who has a grandchild in the Colbert County School System.

Colbert County Schools are one of the school systems that share resource officers in their district. The school system doesn't have the funding to have an SRO in every school and they could apply for Ivey's new program to arm administrators. Ivey’s plan, which did not go through the state legislature, allows school administrators to be armed after training with the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency, undergoing a mental evaluation, and ongoing training and drug screenings. The armed school administrators would also have to store their weapon in a safe secure location.

Johnson questions how effective an armed administrator could be if they have to unlock a safe to get to their gun during an active shooter situation?

"If a person got to go and unlock a box to get a firearm out ten people could be dead," said Johnson.

Colbert County Superintendent Gale Satchel said arming school administrators is not her first choice in school safety. Satchel said she's is focusing on applying for grants to get the funding to have a school resource officer in every Colbert County School. She says this new program is an option,but probably not one Colbert County Schools will use.

"We want to have those folks who are truly trained to be in law enforcement. Who are truly trained to take down the enemy, and I want my educators to be educators," said Satchel.

Under Ivey's program school systems would have to pay for the secure location of the guns, ammunition, weapons, and the bullet proof vest. Satchel said she would rather their money focus on education instead of arming administrators.

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