Broken Arrow company proposes plan for armed guards at schools

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Updated: 2/11/2013 9:14 am Published: 2/08/2013 11:02 pm

Nationwide people are concerned about the safety of children in public schools and a Broken Arrow company proposed a solution to state officials.

Executive Protection LLC’s president, Walt Brazington, has proposal called: the Home Grown Heroes Program.  It includes Council on Law Enforcement and Education Training for two school volunteers to be certified for every public school in the state.  It would cost upwards of $17 million to implement.  His company would run the logistics. 

“What’s in it for me is there is an opportunity to break new ground; to show there is something different out there and this hasn’t been done,” said Brazington.  “It’s practical, it’s feasible, it’s financially doable.” 

His company would be responsible for recruiting the volunteers.  He is confident Oklahomans will be ready to give their time to protect students.

“We have a lot of people to choose from like moms, to retired people, former military members, former security, police force, all these different aspects of people who walk through our state.”

Tulsa Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Keith Ballard appreciate the Brazington’s intentions, but does not see it as the right solution.

“If I could have it my way, the state would put aside its politics and find a way to pay for armed guards in the schools,” said Dr. Ballard. “They could put a tax sold on every bullet in Oklahoma.” 

Dr. Ballard said in his 75 Tulsa Public Schools he has 23 Tulsa Police Officers who are CLEET certified like Brazington has suggested.  

There is a bill moving through legislation that would have districts pay for teachers and administrators to become CLEET certified and go through 240 hours of CLEET training.

“Now they’ve come up with a solution to put volunteers in the classrooms?” questioned Dr. Ballard.  “It doesn’t seem to be a really serious move to keep the safety and security of kids in the forefront.” 

A mother of two children in TPS schools and a TPS volunteer also agrees with Dr. Ballard. 

“I am comfortable with TPS’s police presence and the current security as far as checking people’s ID’s when they want to come into the schools,” said Rhonda Hinrichs.  “I think it would be better to have paid armed officers rather than volunteers.”

On Friday, one of her children’s schools went on lock down because of a police chase outside of the school. 

“My heart did not even skip a beat when I got the text and call that my child’s school was on lockdown.  I feel secure that my child is safe with the teachers here and with the school’s security procedures.”

FOX23 will follow guns in school legislation as it moves forward.

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The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of KOKI FOX23 - Tulsa

LocalTulsan - 2/13/2013 3:40 PM
1 Vote
As a stay at home mom, I support this idea. I wouldn't mind at all standing guard at my child's school. From reading the proposal on the website I didn't see anywhere where it stated that they would stand INSIDE the schools. I would much rather be outside the school anyways, that's where any one wanting to attack the school is going to come from. Doesn;t really make sense to have a guard standing inside the classroom to prevent an attack. Makes more sense to prevent the attack before it can enter the school. I think more research should be done on this program and clarification is definitely needed!

Unwashed Mass - 2/9/2013 5:45 PM
0 Votes
Ballard is not exactly a model administrator, but he's right on this. Armed teachers / volunteers / vigilantes in schools is a horrible idea.
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