The Broward County School District swiftly and unanimously voted down a measure this week that would arm teachers in hopes of defending students. The decision comes less than two months after the school shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, in which an armed former student took the lives of 14 innocent teens and sparked a nationwide debate about gun control.
The measure would have been funded by the Coach Aaron Feis Guardian Program, which was a $67 million program approved by Florida legislators. The program was named after the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School coach who took on the active shooter in an attempt to protect students and end the shooting.
“I have not met one teacher or one student who is in favor of arming teachers in Broward County,” board member Laurie Levinson said after the decision. While the board members rejected the idea of arming teachers specifically, they did call on legislators to allow them to use the money from the program to arm school resource officers instead.
“We should definitely launch a campaign to persuade the governor, for those districts who do not want to arm their employees, that they give us the money to keep kids safe in other ways,” board member Robin Bartleman said.
Board members said investing more money in mental health programs would be a better solution.
Arming school teachers was an idea first introduced by President Trump, but is widely unpopular with the public, and was even denounced by Parkland shooting survivors.