S&S CISD holds public meeting to discuss faculty carrying concealed handguns on campus

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SADLER, TX -- S&S Consolidated is considering allowing specific staff members to carry concealed handguns on all three school campuses.
Monday night, they held a public meeting to get community input.

Officials say the proposed program would be an added safety measure to ensure students' safety, but some parents say it could do just the opposite.

S&S Consolidated Independent School District is considering implementing the Defender Program next school year.

Superintendent, Tommy Hunter, says with the increase of school shootings and violent attacks in the past few years, the school board believes they need to do whatever they can to keep their students safe.

"We want to prepare for the worst and hope for the best, and this is just an opportunity to protect the kids that we're serving rather than just putting their bodies in front of an armed intruder," Hunter.

He says qualified faculty and staff members would go through a three day firearm training, then they would be allowed to carry their unloaded handguns or store them in a safe that only they can open.

There would be a locked safe in each classroom.

At Monday's meeting community members voiced their concerns about guns on campus.

"We felt this was the best way and the safest way to get a gun into the school to protect the kids," Hunter said.

Hunter says to qualify to be a "Defender," a faculty or staff member must be employed with the school district for two years, and already have a concealed handgun licence before applying for the program.

But these parents are on the fence.

"We need to allow our students to be protected by someone who is qualified to handle crisis situations and our educators need to be educators, and not actual defenders of our students while they're in school," said parent, Amy McMillon.

However, some are for the program.

"I understand it may be scary if your child had no knowledge or experience with guns,so I think there are things put in place by the school board to prevent anything from happening," parent, Danielle Lancaster, said.

Hunter says the Defender Program will be discussed and possibly voted on at Monday's school board meeting.

He says if approved, it will be implemented next school year and faculty will go through training this summer.

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