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Commission Investigating Parkland School Shooting Recommends Arming Teachers

Commission Investigating Parkland School Shooting Recommends Arming Teachers

The proposal would have to be approved by the state legislature

The 15-member commission who investigated the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School released a report Wednesday.

Unanimously approved, the 446-page report contained several recommendations, among which was arming teachers who volunteer to undergo training to carry a weapon.

The report was also critical of the Broward County Sheriff’s Office whose many missteps before, during, and after the shooting have been thoroughly documented.

From West Palm Beach local news:

The commission investigating the Florida high school massacre has turned in its recommendation that teachers who volunteer and undergo training be allowed to carry guns.

The 15-member Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Commission on Wednesday unanimously approved the 446-page report containing that proposal and other recommendations.

It’s now in the hands of Gov. Rick Scott, Governor-elect Ron DeSantis and the Legislature.

The report details what is believed to have happened before, during, and after the Feb. 14 shooting attack that left 17 dead and 17 wounded.

The Legislature would have to approve the proposal to allow teachers to carry guns. It’s opposed by the teachers union and the PTA.

The report is highly critical of the Broward Sheriff’s Office, which recently changed its policy in the wake of the shooting.

The MSD Commission previously said the Broward Sheriff’s Office’s active shooter policy contributed to the massacre.


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It only makes good sense. No “first responders” can be there before an armed teacher, no matter how motivated they might be.

    rabid wombat in reply to Ragspierre. | January 2, 2019 at 6:47 pm

    Absolutely agree…we are the first responders. This is not meant to be any disrespect. Nobody can be there faster than the ones involved.

    PersonofInterests in reply to Ragspierre. | January 3, 2019 at 12:15 pm

    When seconds count, the Police are ALWAYS minutes away, except when there is a “Coward County” Sheriff Deputy on duty at the scene and he runs from sound of the gun shots.

The local and very left wing Ft. Lauderdale Sun Sentinel has carried a front page story on Parkland nearly every day. David Hogg is a deity to them. The name of Sheriff Scott Israel is never mentioned in the stories. I can see Louis CK’s point.

When all levels of security have been breached the only response to an armed shooter is an armed citizen. Sorry lefties.

    mailman in reply to Ulysses. | January 3, 2019 at 3:02 am

    Its especially easy when you consider that all those levels of security pretty much amount to a sign on the front door saying “no guns allowed”.

The Florida Legislature needs to revoke Gun Free Zones and to prohibit any retaliation for those who lawfully assert their right to keep and bear arms. Being proficient with firearms and their prudent use should be considered a necessary and useful skill along with CPR and first aid.

    The GOP controlled Florida Legislature passed and Gov. Scott signed useless legislation that would not have prevented Parkland or arguably any other shooting.

    Gun rights were taken away from those under the age of 21 and other nonsensical “solutions” were implemented.

    This was before the election and selective vote pandering was in order.

    Fort Lauderdale which is Blue and with the support of the GOP finally drove out the quarterly gun show. It was deemed that it wasn’t suitable for its venue. That venue was the War Memorial Auditorium and Park. LOL

    One of the new GOP commissioners referenced and supported a young mother arrogantly claiming that a gun event had no place in HER park. Yep, the War Memorial Park is no place for guns.

    Sadly, it appears that we cannot count on Republican politicians anymore than the other kind.

Now that’s a common sense gun law I can get behind.

“…opposed by the teachers union and the PTA.”

Isn’t this interesting. So, will they tell us their real agenda? It sure isn’t the safety of the students.

The Packetman | January 2, 2019 at 7:53 pm

If this gets any traction at all in the FL legislature it will be deftly neutered by adding unreachable requirements like … school board approval … sheriff approval of each applicant … law enforcement-approved training. It’s only common sense.

Just like here in GA …

The commission report was utterly SCATHING of the Broward county law enforcement, civil service, and school’s handling of everything leading up to and including the shooting.

I bet nobody will lose their jobs either, and the elected public officials will be re-elected, because Broward county is the worst.

Armed teachers. Armed guards. The first responders are on site… and willing to serve.

I still think they’d do better arming some of the custodial staff. They’re also on-site (the most important factor), don’t have to interact so closely with those pesky teens at all hours of the day (and find ways to keep them away from the weapons), are more likely to be on the job at any particular time, and are less likely to hurt themselves when using tools. And it keeps the teacher’s unions out of it.

    Gremlin1974 in reply to tom_swift. | January 3, 2019 at 12:13 pm

    While I don’t think that Teachers should be excluded, I think you have a valid point, Administration and support staff would be good people to look into. As example I am a School Nurse and I have carried and shot for 20+ years and I would be one of the first to put my name in to be an armed first responder.

But the Sheriff and the Superintendent of Schools both still have their jobs.

In Newtown the teachers sacrificed their lives trying to save their students. Is there any doubt that they would have preferred to have firearms and a chance of success?

    PapaGuns in reply to ConradCA. | January 2, 2019 at 11:59 pm

    “In Newtown the teachers sacrificed their lives trying to save their students. Is there any doubt that they would have preferred to have firearms and a chance of success?”

    Conrad, I said the same thing you said and got banned from twitter for it.

The state should not have any say in the matter. It should be locally controlled.

How about arming administrators first and see how that works….then consider arming teachers? My guess is that armed administrators would be enough, and it’s a workable compromise.

they had an armed resource officer on site and he did nothing, and the court said he had no obligation to do anything, what makes arming teachers any different

    puhiawa in reply to ronk. | January 2, 2019 at 10:52 pm

    Because he was hiding, just like the Columbine police officers But teachers are in a classroom or hall with the kids and are part of the target. Do not forget the teachers at Columbine and Parkland that attacked the killers with nothing but a chair or broom. They died or were grievously wounded. But they did not hide.

I am waiting for the parents of the victims to sue the state and federal government for removing their rights to defend their children.

What they should do is eliminate schools as a prohibited place for concealed carry. Then anybody with a carry license, including teachers if they wish, could carry there. The legislature won’t do it though, even though it’s nominally Republican dominated. Florida has some weird prohibited places, like vocational schools, almost all athletic events, and school buildings even if not on a campus where students attend.

    Mac45 in reply to randian. | January 3, 2019 at 11:55 am

    The level of training required to obtain a Florida CWFL is a short classroom course on gun safety and use of force laws and the firing of a single round. While I applaud that being far closer to the language of the 2nd Amendment as the state could come, while regulating public carry of firearms and other weapons, it does not represent any real training at all. A LEO, Florida, goes through approximately 40 hours of hands-on firearms training, initially, and usually at least 8 hours of training and qualification a year. Al this after undergoing a 6-10 hour psychological examination for fitness.

    One constantly argued fact about carry in places prohibited under FSS 790.115 is that the statute allows for a person to be “authorized” to carry a weapon in such areas if it is in support of any school sanctioned activities. Providing security at such functions would seem to be a school sanctioned activity and, therefor, a qualified administrator may authorize the carry of firearms by select people.

Let me address the notion of having armed teachers, and others inside a school. There are three parts of this which have to be considered.

The first is the safety of the students. A school is a sensitive environment. It has a large number of young, to very young, innocents. All of whom have to be protected from harm. Bullets are not guided missiles. Once fired, they travel in essentially a straight line until they hit something. Also, the untrained students can, an often do, fail to remain out of the line of fire. They stand up, move around, run, etc. And, most interior walls, including in schools, will not stop pistol bullets. Finally, there is the method by which the teacher would carry the firearm. Carrying a pistol, on the body, presents challenges, especially if carried for long periods of time. And, any method of carry has to eliminate, not just reduce, the chances of a student gaining possess or access to the weapon and discharging it. This leads us to the second factor in this debate.

The second factor is training. To eliminate many of the potential problems associated with general carry in a school, the carrier has to be highly trained and disciplined. This requires a high degree of initial training and regular practice and retraining. It has to be done to certain standards, for liability issues, and for the safe use of the firearm in a volatile, crowded, sensitive environment. Stopping the active shooter is not going to be acceptable if the defender also wounds or kills little Johnny or Jill. Shoot-don’t shoot scenario training will be required. Effective firearm use in a crowded venue has to be extensively practiced. , carry in a school will be a carry much use almost never situation, routine gun handling discipline has to be intense. Teachers have to guard against leaving the weapon where children can gain access to it. No leaving it on the back of the toilet, in an unlocked desk drawer or in a purse or bag. All persons carrying a firearm in a school will require the same level of training, including parents and visitors. Then, as people can suffer from psychological problems, psychological screening becomes a must, for weapon carriers.

The third factor is cost. As we are talking about deadly weapons and children here, liability for injury is immense. A single negligent act can end up costing the school system millions of dollars in judgements. Just the cost of liability insurance is going to be staggering. To reduce this cost, training has to be rigorous. This requires a large expenditure of funds, as well. And, the more armed people who are in the school, the higher these costs become.

While having armed teachers in the classrooms sounds like a good idea, it does not address the big problem, access. In order for a classroom teacher to engage an active shooter, that shooter has to be inside the facility and, probably, already shooting people. This means that even of the shooter is stopped relatively quickly, innocents are still going to be injured and possibly killed.

It is much more efficient to strictly control access to the facility, using armed personnel, and have a small, highly trained, armed response team on site. This is also much cheaper.