Gun Marshals in School: Training Begins in Texas

CNN
Tuesday, July 15, 2014 - 12:15pm

DALLAS-FORT WORTH (KDAF) -- Richard Martinez's son was killed after a shooting on the University of California Santa Barbara campus this May. Out of that tragedy came the rallying cry, 'Not one more!'

Some folks think the answer is gun control. In Texas, we're gonna try arming teachers with concealed weapons.

Texas State Rep. Jason Villalba wrote The Protection of Texas Children Act, which allows school districts to create a School Marshal in all K-12 schools. These are folks already employed by the school, like principals, teachers, coaches -- hey, even the lunch lady can qualify -- who will have access to a firearm.

"It can only be accessed if lives are being threatened or taken," Villalba says.

No surprise: This is creating some controversy. Dallas ISD's police chief, Craig Miller, doesn't think nine days of training is enough for putting a gun in the classroom, so DISD is not part of the program. Neither is FWISD.

Monday was the first day of training for 20 armed school marshals at Tarrant County College; they'll go through 80 hours of training before they'll be allowed to keep their gun 'locked and secure' -- and within reach. Only the head of the school and the cops will know who the school marshals are.

Oh -- and everyone has to undergo a psychological exam.

So, if all goes well in training, some teachers will be packing heat in August.

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