Florida university to be case study for armed teachers in US schools

A Florida university is aiming to be an example to schools that could move to arm its staff following a massacre at a nearby high school that left 17 people dead.

President Donald Trump has suggested providing teachers with concealed weapons would put a quick end to any school shooting, because it allows staff to defend the school, ITV News reports.

Southeastern University has been viewed as a possible example for a programme allowing armed staff after the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting.

University President Dr Kent Ingle argues armed staff can provide a faster response than waiting for emergency services in the event of a shooting.

"It takes five to seven minutes for law enforcement to get here," he said.

"By then, most of the time that rampage is over, and when an active killer comes on campus and they start spraying bullets, you don't have time to wait and waste."

Chris Owen, an armed teacher and administrator at Southeastern, believes calls to arm staff will grow louder in the future.

"You have people on campuses who say: 'I am ready, willing and able to step in, in the moment of an active shooter if you'll just train me'," he said.

"I think you'll hear those voices rise in the weeks and months to come."

While the plan to arm staff has broad support at Southeastern, others are not convinced it would be effective.

Ashley Kurth hid her students in a corner of her classroom during the Marjory Stoneman attack and says arming teachers would do little to help.

"Where you have civilians that you're trying to protect and at the same time, we're not military, we're not law enforcement, this is not a part of our everyday training," she said.

"So are we just going to require you go to law enforcement training and then you can get your teaching degree?

"Is that what it's going to be now?"


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