Ohio Governor Mike DeWine has declared his intention to sign a new bill that will allow school teachers to carry firearms.
Governor DeWine released a statement on the official Ohio Governor’s website addressing the new law. DeWine, who was a sponsor of the bill, said the goal was to speed up the approval process for teachers to bring their weapons to class.
The statement reads, “Last week I called on the General Assembly to pass a bill that would allow local school districts, if they so chose, to designate armed staff for school security and safety. My office worked with the General Assembly to remove hundreds of hours of curriculum irrelevant to school safety and to ensure training requirements were specific to a school environment and contained significant scenario-based training. House Bill 99 accomplishes these goals, and I thank the General Assembly for passing this bill to protect Ohio children and teachers. I look forward to signing this important legislation.”
The new HB 99 bill will override a previous ruling on the issue from the Ohio Supreme Court. The Court ruled that teachers must complete 700 hours of training before they can concealed carry on campus.
Under the new rules, teachers will only require 24 hours of training with the firearm and 8 additional hours every year to carry. They will also be required to undergo criminal background checks.
The legislation passed the Ohio House along partisan lines and came exactly 10 days after a mass shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas that saw 19 children and 2 teachers murdered by a single gunman.
Along with the new legislation, Governor DeWine announced he will be appropriating $100 million for new school security measures and another $5 million for security upgrades at colleges.
Arming teachers is a solution to school shootings frequently pitched by Republican politicians, and Ohio the first one to actually do it with Louisiana currently attempting to do the same. While Democrats say it won’t solve the problems and could lead to kids accessing guns, Republicans argue it will allow teachers to fight back when incidents occur. Would you be comfortable with your child’s teacher carrying a firearm in class?