School districts are working to make sure students and educators have a safe learning environment when classes begin. Districts have to comply with school safety laws enacted after the mass shooting in Parkland. Requirements include having armed guards on campus.
Leon County has announced new emergency procedures. Superintendent Rocky Hanna told The Florida Channel the plan does not include arming teachers as allowed by the law.
“We have armed safety officers in all of our schools that are sworn law officers. We are not implementing the guardian program, which has been very controversial. We’re not arming school staff. We’re not arming teachers," Hanna said. "But we have committed about $850,000 and hired 50 security monitors that are unarmed but work side by side with those law enforcement officers to monitor the campuses.”
Leon County held an exercise Wednesday where administrators were given real world scenarios and taken through procedures to prepare them for an actual emergency.
“To come to an exercise like this right before school starts is a breath of fresh air because it shows me that the Leon County school district is preparing for the school year that lies ahead," said Damien Kelly, director of the Florida Department of Education's Office of Safe Schools. "I hope it’s a peaceful one, and I hope the worst thing that happens on a campus is that somebody gets a C on a test.”
School begins August 12th in Leon County.