Employees of the Newcomerstown Exempted Village School District in Ohio will be allowed to carry guns on school property starting in the 2013-14 academic year thanks to a new policy passed by the board of education. According to the policy, “certain persons designated by the board and superintendent to convey deadly weapons … in a school safety zone of the Newcomerstown Exempted Village School District.”
At this point, details about the plan are scarce and Superintendent Jeff Staggs indicated that is on purpose.
“It’s part of our school safety plan,” Staggs said. “This is a discussion we’ve had for a long time. We’ve been very transparent. We want to keep our students safe.”
Board President Jerry Lahmers said the policy would be less effective if the general public knew the number of people who were authorized to carry weapons or where they specifically worked.
The employees who are allowed to have guns on school property must have a permit to carry a concealed handgun, undergo tactical training and be recertified by the Tuscarawas County Sheriff’s Department every year, according to the Times Reporter.
Earlier this year, a group calling itself the Parent Safety Committee requested that the board allow school employees to be trained and armed. The group referenced a New York Daily News report that stated, “With a single exception, every multiple-victim public shooting in the U.S. in which more than three people have been killed since at least 1950 has taken place where citizens are not allowed to carry their own firearms.”
The board’s resolution was reached after it participated in work sessions with the Tuscarawas County sheriff, Newcomerstown police chief and the Buckeye Firearms Association.