Saying the safety of each and every child in Madison Twp. has to be the “district’s highest priority,” the Madison Local School District Board of Education approved a resolution to allow armed staff in the district. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF

CLOSER LOOK: Madison school district’s plan to arm teachers, staff

This resolution is part of the district’s participation in the FASTER Saves Lives program, school officials said today.

FIRST REPORT: Madison Local Schools board votes to allow arming of teachers, staff

The FASTER program — Faculty/Administrator Safety Training and Emergency Response — consists of a 26-hour training focused on armed response, crisis management, and emergency medical aid, the district said.

Staff participation in the FASTER program will be voluntary, Madison school board president Dave French said.

Staff who do choose to participate will be trained in the early identification of at-risk students, armed response, crisis management and emergency medical aid, he said.

MORE: In rural communities like Madison Twp. ‘guns are just a part of life’

“I hope our community understands that the FASTER program is so much more than just about arming staff in our schools,” French said in a statement. “The training that is part of the program will make our district more safe and our staff better prepared to handle an emergency situation.”

The FASTER program has trained more than 1,091 school teachers and staff members from 226 districts in 12 states, including staff from 76 of Ohio’s 88 counties, Madison officials said.

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