Sign Of The Times
Parents dropping off their children at the first day of classes in one North Texas school district were met with a new gun policy.
"Please be aware that the staff at Argyle ISD are armed and may use whatever force is necessary to protect our students," read signs at the elementary, middle and high school.
The signs, which have garnered national media attention, are part of a comprehensive new safety strategy in Argyle ISD. The 3A school district voted in January to authorize employees to pack heat on campus.
"To maintain the strategic integrity of the new policy and ensure the stability and ongoing effectiveness of the new procedures, the district will not be making public the comprehensive details of the new procedures," Argyle ISD said in a statement.
What they would release about the program includes the creation of a district police department and a volunteer pool of armed staff members. Only employees already licensed by the state to carry a concealed handgun are eligible to do so at schools. Additionally, the district will organize active shooter trainings on each of the three campuses.
Since the Protection of Texas Children Act passed in 2013, a handful of state school districts have decided to arm staff members. Rep. Jason Villalba (R-Dallas) sponsored the bill.
"Law enforcement officers cannot be everywhere at all times. In an active shooter situation, we need an option for reducing initial response times from minutes to seconds," Villalba said in a statement.