SD House panel approves bill on arming teachers

By Chet Brokaw, timesunion.com

A deeply divided South Dakota legislative committee approved a bill Friday that would allow school districts to arm teachers and other personnel with guns to protect against attacks like last month’s school shooting in Connecticut.

The Education Committee voted 8-7 to send the measure to the House after extensive testimony and debate in hearings over two days.

Supporters said school boards need the option of arming teachers, administrators or volunteers to protect against attacks, particularly in rural districts where no law enforcement officers are stationed in school buildings. But opponents — including organizations representing school boards, teachers and administrators — said putting guns in schools could make them more dangerous because it could lead to accidental shootings or other problems if students get their hands on teachers’ guns.

http://www.timesunion.com/news/crime/article/SD-House-panel-approves=

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