NRA Proposes Cop In Every School, Armed Staff Volunteers

5:26 PM, Apr 2, 2013   |    comments
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WASHINGTON (WUSA9) --  Three and a half months after the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary, a consultant for the National Rifle Association is out with a plan to keep schools safe.

The timing is interesting, with gun control measures faltering and up for debate next week in the US Senate.

There are no more community volunteers packing heat in the 225 page plan, but it's likely to still stir controversy. It envisions trained school staffers volunteering to carry weapons. And it recommends an armed police officer in every school right down to kindergarten.

After the massacre in Newtown, the NRA pitched armed volunteers from the community to secure our schools. "The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun." said the NRA's Wayne LaPierre.

But under tight security of his own, Asa Hutchinson, the consultant and former congressman leading the NRA's National School Shield Task Force is backing away from community volunteers.

"In terms of volunteers, my impression from school superintendents is that they would have great reluctance, so that's not the best solution."

Instead the report recommends changing state laws to allow staffers with 40 to 60 hours of training to carry guns at school.
"Teachers should teach," says Hutchinson. "But if there is personnel who has good experience..."

The report also recommends a police officer in every one of America's 132,000 public schools -- a proposal that would likely cost billions of dollars. But Mike Mattiolli, who lost his son James at Sandy Hook, says it's worth it. "These are recommendations for solutions. Real solutions that will make our kids safer."

School safety expert Ed Clarke is unsure about armed staff volunteers, "We cannot panic and over-react." He wonders if strapped school districts can afford an officer in every school. "I'm a big supporter of school resource officers, well trained. I'm not sure at this time we should go to every elementary school."

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