Headline: Manchester Local Schools votes 4-1 in favor of arming teachers
WCPO (ABC Cincinnati) is reporting that the board of Manchester Local Schools voted 4-1 in favor of arming teachers and staff in front of a scattered handful of spectators Wednesday night.
Superintendent Brian Rau was quoted as saying he believed the meager turnout was an indication most of the community supported his plan, which would allow volunteer staff members to carry concealed weapons after taking a three-day, 27-hour training course through the Tactical Defense Institute in West Union.
From the article:
Tim Davis, a middle school science teacher, said he believed Manchester schools employees would be able to react faster to a crisis than police, more effectively limiting the damage a shooter would be able to do.
“The Stoneman Douglas shooting took place in the span of about 15 minutes," he said. "Average police response time is 12.5 minutes. God forbid, if it were to happen, the shooting would be over and done with and we’d be left to pick up the pieces until law enforcement gets here."
He had been discussing the idea of arming some staff members with the community for a year.
“We don’t have a police department. We do have the Adams County Sheriff's Department, but they could be at quickest 20 minutes away. Most of the school shootings are finished within way before 20 minutes,” Rau said.
The district has a school resource officer, but he can’t be everywhere at the same time and protect the 841 students in the district, he added.
“You always want to send the kids home in as good or better shape than the parents sent them to you in the morning,” Davis said. “I feel that being able to protect them in any way is guaranteeing that.”
Security-minded parents who live in places with differing philosophies at area schools may want to keep this in mind and consider open-enrolling in a school that is capable of providing immediate protection for their children.
In response to the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School Shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, which claimed the lives of 20 children and 6 adult staff members, Buckeye Firearms Foundation launched an emergency response training program here in Ohio for teachers, administrators, and other school staff.
Called FASTER Saves Lives (Faculty/Administrator Safety Training & Emergency Response), the nonprofit program has to date provided high-level training to 2,000 teachers and staff members from 250 school districts in 15 states. This includes teachers and staff in 77 of Ohio's 88 counties.
"The response from Ohio educators has been more enthusiastic than we could have ever imagined," said Joe Eaton, FASTER Program Director.
"When we first announced that we planned to train teachers in armed response and emergency medical aid," Eaton continued, "some people said teachers would never sign up. But within days of announcing the program, we had 600 apply for training. In weeks, it soared to over 1,000. Today we have over 3,000 faculty members from all over Ohio on our mailing list. And more are contacting us every day."
The enthusiasm for this program has gone far beyond Ohio. School staff from six other states have attended FASTER training. In addition, instructors from as far away as Colorado have traveled to Ohio to see how the program works and take the idea back to their home state.
Created by concerned parents, law enforcement, and nationally-recognized safety and medical experts, FASTER is a groundbreaking, nonprofit program that gives educators practical violence response training.
The program is funded by Buckeye Firearms Foundation, a 501(c)(3) charitable educational organization based in Ohio and the sister organization to Buckeye Firearms Association. Classes can be provided at NO COST to school personnel or school districts. Restrictions apply.
The program presents a carefully-structured curriculum with over 30 hours of hands-on training over a 3-day class that exceeds the requirements of the Ohio Peace Officer Training Academy.
The purpose is not to replace police and EMT, but to allow teachers, administrators, and other personnel on-site to stop school violence rapidly and render medical aid immediately. It is a well-established fact that faster response to school shootings and other violence results in fewer lives lost.
Chad D. Baus served as Buckeye Firearms Association Secretary from 2013-2019. He is co-founder of BFA-PAC, and served as its Vice Chairman for 15 years. He is the editor of BuckeyeFirearms.org, which received the Outdoor Writers of Ohio 2013 Supporting Member Award for Best Website, and is also an NRA-certified firearms instructor.