Genoa Central School District discusses possibility of deputizing faculty members
TEXARKANA, Ark. (KATV) -- While school districts across the state take a closer look at their school safety plans following the Florida school shooting, at least one small district—Genoa Central School District in Miller County—is considering deputizing some faculty members.
This comes after numerous parents have voiced safety concerns in the event of a mass school shooting taking place.
“What are we going to do to secure our schools and help make it safe?” Lisa Posey, who teaches technology to students and teachers, said. Posey is one of a few faculty members looking to become a sheriff’s deputy, that is, if the school board passes the proposal.
At a board meeting Monday evening the school board let parents weigh in on the possibility of some school faculty members wear two hats: teachers and sheriff’s deputies.
“There’s always a presence here in the county with the sheriff’s department being here. They’re the first responders, but if there’s somebody here [at the schools] on site, that’s even a faster response,” Posey explained.
Right now one Miller County sheriff’s deputy works as a full-time resource officer, patrolling school parking lots and entrances. But school leaders would like to take that safety measure a step further, according to Posey.
“This would be a commitment. That’s one of the reasons that they started the conversation with us. To me, it’s no different than keeping our students safe and locking that door as I walk out,” Posey said.
The sheriff’s deputies-to-be would go through extensive firearm training, according to Posey. But as far as what parts of the school buildings the deputized faculty members could be armed in is still unclear.
“We have not gotten that far and talked about that. I know for me, in the kindergarten and elementary setting I would not want [a gun] to be visible to those students,” Posey explained.
To get the ball rolling, the superintendent will meet with the Miller County Sheriff’s Office before a decision is officially made.
Posey tells Channel 7 that no one at the school board meeting held Monday night spoke out against the possibility of deputizing faculty members.