Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine Signs Bill That Allows Armed School Staff

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Ohio school districts can begin arming staff as soon as it falls under a law approved by Republican lawmakers and must be signed by Republican Gov. Mike Devine.

Democrats said the proposal, optional for schools, sends the wrong message a week after the massacre of 19 children and two teachers at an elementary school in Uwald, Texas. Republicans say the measure could prevent such shootings. Lawmakers have accelerated legislation to counter the impact of a court ruling that has restricted practice.

The bill will protect children by providing school-specific education and including meaningful scenario-based learning, Devine said late Wednesday, announcing his support.

Major law enforcement groups, gun control advocates and state teachers’ unions oppose the move, asking Devine to veto the move. This is supported by several police departments and school districts.

According to the latest version of the bill, school workers carrying weapons will need up to 24 hours of initial training, followed by up to eight hours of retraining each year.

DeWine also announced that the state construction budget will allocate $ 100 million to improve school security in schools and $ 5 million to increase security in colleges.

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