Buckeye Firearms Foundation commissions six more teacher classes

by Jim Irvine

In the wake of the killings at Sandy Hook elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut, Buckeye Firearms Foundation partnered with John Benner of Tactical Defense Institute (TDI) to give teachers and administrators training on the best ways to stop an active killer in a school. The idea garnered worldwide attention and the first class was a resounding success. Many Ohio schools finished the year with armed teachers/administrators available to protect children and employees from violence. Sadly, more schools have still done nothing to deal with a similar situation.

Now that school is out, many teachers will be students in a summer class. Buckeye Firearms Foundation has committed $100,000 to our FASTER (Faculty/Administrator Safety Training and Emergency Response) training. It will pay for three additional classes at TDI this summer, and three additional classes in NE Ohio with "Top Shot" finalist Chris Cerino. The same three-day class will be taught in both locations, but the demand exceeds any one person's ability to meet, so we are branching out to other highly-qualified instructors.

The key element in active killer situations is time. The longer a killer has before he is interrupted, the more people he harms. The faster someone is able to confront and stop him, the more lives are saved. Reducing response time is great, but it will never be as fast as a response from inside the building. Giving teachers and administrators the skills, tools, and mindset to stop an active killer is the fastest way to stop the killing. FASTER is better.

To support this program, click the donate button. Buckeye Firearms Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit educational organization. Donations to the Foundation are tax-deductible.

Many schools didn't want to make any "rash decisions" or "over-react" to the Sandy Hook massacre, especially something perceived as controversial as authorizing teachers to carry firearms in defense of children. But this is really about "safety" and not about "guns." Every school board member, teacher, administrator and parent cares about safety. Safety should trump political correctness every time, but especially when the lives of our kids are at stake.

We are working with school districts that have already made the decision to authorize certain volunteers to be armed while at school. They have asked us for help in training additional persons so that all of the schools in their district have at least one person trained. Having multiple people trained and available further reduces the time to stop a killer, especially in large schools.
We continue to work with other school districts who have not made a decision to arm, but remain uncomfortable knowing they have nothing in place to stop an active killer. The locks, buzzers, cameras, and other safety features are good, but they will not stop a determined attacker who is inside the school. Sandy Hook is proof of that.

Many school boards have received advice from local police or attorneys that they should not authorize anyone to carry firearms. We continue to ask anyone opposed to our program to give us a better way to stop an active killer, but thus far no one has a real solution. Some want to scare people with the "increased liability" of guns in schools. But they never compare the liability born by schools that had no armed security. (Jonesboro, Red Lake, Paducah, Newtown to name a few.) Dead bodies equal liability. More dead bodies leads to more liability, and loss of life will cause loss of money to the district. There are lots of "what ifs" to scare people, but no discussion of real problems in the places that have had armed protection, many for a decade. Armed persons in schools is not a radical new idea, it's a proven solution to an increasingly common danger.

One by one, as schools boards learn the truth about active killer events, and how the FASTER program can reduce the death toll, their concerns are giving way to support. They are working with Buckeye Firearms Foundation and to train their people and add a critical last line of defense for their employees and children.

Through the FASTER program, teachers learn about past active killer situations and the lessons learned from them. They develop a mindset that may help them recognize an event to stop it before it starts. They are also taught shooting techniques to use in schools to stop killers and limit the number of people shot during the event. Lastly, they learn trauma care to treat the injured. Lives can be saved before, during, and after an event. Every life is sacred and we must do everything we can to ensure the safety of our kids. Successful completion of the Ohio law-enforcement shooting qualification course is required to complete the class.

If you would like to volunteer for the training, you may apply here.

If you are a school board member who wants more information, contact me at [email protected].

Jim Irvine is the Buckeye Firearms Foundation President, and recipient of the NRA-ILA's 2011 "Jay M. Littlefield Volunteer of the Year Award" and the CCRKBA's 2012 "Gun Rights Defender of the Year Award."

To support this program, click the donate button. Buckeye Firearms Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit educational organization. Donations to the Foundation are tax-deductible.

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