HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — The Pennsylvania Senate Education Committee has advanced a bill that would require schools to employ armed security personnel during operating hours.
The bill advanced by a 6-4 vote with one lawmaker not voting.
State Senator Mike Regan’s proposal would require armed personnel to comply with vigorous training and certification requirements, such as lethal weapons training and how to interact with students. The General Assembly has $800 million in grant funds to help districts pay for school safety and safety upgrades, which is according to the Pennsylvania Department of Education.
“Schools should be a place where students and teachers feel safe and the focus can be on learning,” said the bill’s sponsor Sen. Mike Regan (R-Cumberland/York). “Parents want to know when they drop their kids off in the morning at school that their child is going to safely return home at the end of the school day.”
“School safety experts have told us the most effective method of deterring violence in schools is by putting an armed, trained, and vetted security person in every school,” Regan said. “We need to do this now before another tragedy strikes a school full of children.”
Regan’s bill will now head to the full Senate for consideration.