Springboro school board member to propose arming staff

SPRINGBORO, Ohio - Board members of the Springboro Community City School board are preparing to discuss a question on the minds of many educators in the wake of the Sandy Hook school tragedy: Should teachers and staff be allowed to arm themselves in school?

At Thursday night's board meeting, Springboro school board member Jim Rigano will lead the discussion about the legality of arming certain staff members.

Rigano wants teachers who have a concealed carry license to be able to bring that weapon to school.

The topic will be introduced at a work session that will be held at 7 p.m. Thursday at Springboro High School auditorium. Location for the discussion had moved twice throughout Thursday, after word spread about the agenda item to Springboro parents, staff, and community members. The meeting is open to the public.

Springboro Superintendent Todd Petrey told 9 On Your Side that the meeting should be interesting but he isn't sure what Rigano specifically plans to propose.

However, Petrey did say, "I have no intent to ever arm Springboro teachers."

Springboro is not the only district exploring the issue of guns and student safety.

Cincinnati Public Schools recently instituted a new type of training to deal with the potential threat of gun violence in schools .

The program, called ALICE, teaches staff to alert, lockdown, inform, counter and evacuate in a mass shooting situation.

The ALICE program was developed out of the experienced learned from the 1999 Columbine High School massacre.

Beyond school efforts, pro-gun lobby group Buckeye Firearms Association is sending 24 Ohio teachers and administrators to tactical training in the spring to teach them how to deal with a mass shooter situation.

Hundreds of teachers reportedly volunteered for the course when the association first offered it.

The discussion also comes on a day when another school shooting, this one in Taft, Calif., where two were reportedly injured.

In an unscientific poll conducted at WCPO.com 30 percent of participants don't believe guns carried by teachers should never be allowed on campus, while 42 percent say yes, if the teacher is properly trained.

Reach Brian Mains at Brian.Mains@wcpo.com and 9 On Your Side reporter Jay Warren at Jay.Warren@wpco.com and stay with 9 On Your Side and WCPO.com for details from the Springboro board meeting.

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