Hands up: Ohio sheriff offers gun training to teachers

Hands up: Ohio sheriff offers gun training to teachers
A sheriff in Ohio is offering free concealed and carry classes to teachers in the wake of the recent school shooting in Florida. Sheriff Richard Jones hopes that more gun-toting teachers will prevent future school shootings.

Jones took to Twitter on Sunday to announce he would be offering the free gun lessons. He urged Butler County School Employees to sign up for class with their full name, school affiliate and contact information.

In a video posted on the department's Facebook page, Jones said that “the current way we do things in the school system needs to be changed”.

In a letter addressed to Ohio Governor John Kasich (R), which was shown in the video, Jones wrote that “more teachers and school employees need to be allowed to be armed on school premises.

There need to be “armed guards in the schools, we need to look at metal detectors. This is not going to stop or go away, but we need to be prepared and not have our heads in the sand,” Jones wrote.

According to the Butler County Sheriff’s Office Facebook page, the class will be limited to 50 people. Any employee of a school located in Butler County is eligible to apply, as long as they can provide proof of employment in a school and a valid ID.

In a Tweet posted on Monday, Jones claimed that over 200 people have already applied for the gun training lessons.  

The initiative comes in the wake of the fatal shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. The attacker, identified as former student Nikolas Cruz, opened fire with an AR-15 rifle, killing 17 people and injuring many more.

However, not everyone was enthusiastic about Jones’s proposal.

Don’t ask teachers to shoulder more responsibility and carry weapons. This does not make schools safe, it makes them less welcoming and caring for students,” commenter Ashley Vaughn wrote on Facebook.

Jones’s push for more gun-wielding teachers has been echoed by other law enforcement officers in the US. On Friday, Polk County, Florida Sheriff Grady Judd announced the launch of the Sheriff’s Sentinel Program, which would allow teachers to carry firearms in the classroom.

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