Bill Headed To Governor’s Desk That Could Arm Teachers On Campus

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

FRANKLIN COUNTY, Ala. (WHNT) - A controversial bill pertaining only to Franklin County is on its way to Governor Bentley's desk.

Representative Johnny Mack Morrow introduced a bill that would allow trained staff to carry guns onto school property.

If the bill is passed into law, there could soon be more armed protection in Franklin County Schools; but not in the form of school resource officers, county patrolmen, or Russellville police officers.

Instead, teachers and counselors could be toting guns on campus.

“It’s going to take some adjusting to get use to and get everyone trained and just see how its going to work out,” said Franklin County Sheriff Shannon Oliver.

If the governor signs the bill, school staff could be trained by local law enforcement as reserve deputies, in order to carry weapons on school grounds.

“There's good and bad to it,” said Sheriff Oliver.  “The good things, just having that person there with a weapon that can protect them against an active shooter.”

However, Sheriff Oliver worries about the effectiveness of arming teachers in a real-life situation.  “The bad is there's always liability in everything you do and being able to fire on someone takes a lot of responsibility and a lot of mental preparation.”

Right now there are no school resource officers in the Franklin County school system.  While Oliver says trained teachers could supplement that lack of security, he believes SROs would be a practical solution for school safety.