STREETSBORO, Ohio (WJW) — Streetsboro school board members have approved a resolution authorizing the superintendent to seek volunteers willing to carry weapons inside school buildings, as a part of what the district calls a proactive response team.
The resolution includes a public statement saying: “In the interest of providing a safe and secure learning environment for students and employees, the Board of Education of the Streetsboro City School District has authorized one or more persons to go armed within the schools operated by the Board, in accordance with R.C. 2923.122(D)(l)(d)(ii)“
The policy simply conforms with a new state law, House Bill 99, which was passed by the Ohio legislature last year.
Read the full resolution below:
The law permits school districts across Ohio to determine what is in their best interest when it comes to arming teachers or employees.
In a statement released to FOX 8 News, Streetsboro Superintendent Mike Daulbaugh said:
Streetsboro City Schools established a Proactive Response Team in 2017 in order to complement an active response from law enforcement in the event of an emergency involving an active threat, like a school shooter, or other violent event where lives are at risk.
Designed with utmost discretion, and with staff and student safety in mind, and with a goal to keep teachers in the classroom teaching rather than worrying about the extra burden of carrying a firearm, Streetsboro’s program members have always been selected from volunteers who are non-instructional staff.
From 2017 until 2021, Proactive Response Team members trained, prepared for, and actively participated in drills focused on school safety, active threats, threat mitigation, and advanced first aid and trauma casualty care on a monthly basis. Each year included intensive summer sessions spanning multiple days in a row.
In 2021, the Ohio Supreme Court overruled local Board ordinance (Gabbard v. Madison Local Board of Ed.) to approve armed staff programs and all members disarmed but continued training in the hopes of a renewed effort to provide additional capability in keeping our schools safe.
The specific objective of the Proactive Response Team is to identify threats, and if possible, stop a violent attacker from killing students and staff, as well as to assist law enforcement and safety services in post-threat mitigation and crisis response.
This past week, the Streetsboro City Schools Proactive Response Team was re-authorized under Ohio Revised Code 5502.703 and local Board of Education protocol to arm staff members that meet the Board and ORC specified requirements. All current members are non-teaching staff and have met or exceeded the requirements set forth by HB 99, as administered by the Ohio School Safety Center (OSSC).Streetsboro City Schools Superintendent Mike Daulbaugh
Those employees whom school districts authorize to carry weapons in a school safety zone must meet specific requirements as established by House Bill 99.
They include 24 hours of training and annual recertification in addition to annual background checks.
Daulbaugh would not be more specific about those who would be authorized.
“Members of the Proactive Response Team who are so authorized by the Board carry firearms and associated equipment during the day while performing their normal responsibilities and duties,” Daulbaugh added. “In the interest of the safety of the program and the PRT staff members, their identity is not disclosed in accordance with local and state emergency management protocols, and is not available through a public records request, per ORC 149.43.”