“This was the best investment we could make to protect our students and staff. We take seriously our responsibility to ensure the safety of our students and staff every day,” he said.
Earlier this week in Illinois at Dixon High School, a student fired shots at school resource officer Mark Dallas. Dallas returned fire and wounded the shooter.
In March in Maryland, an armed school officer at Great Mills High School fired on a student shooter who had wounded two, bringing him down.
Butler County Sheriff Richard Jones — a long-time advocate for adding armed personnel to schools — took to social media in the hours after the Santa Fe school shooting to repeat his earlier, public pressuring of local school officials to move faster to make sure every school has either armed officers, personnel or at least access to weapons for properly trained school staffers.
“When will it be clear what we need to do to protect our children?” Jones tweeted today on his social media account.
In a short, online video posted on Facebook, Jones also said “I’m telling you — and I’ve been saying all along — we have got to take care of our schools.”
“We got to make them a hard target (armed) not a soft target. And this is for the school boards, pay attention. Make these schools safe. We need school resource officers in every school and we need to arm the personnel in there,” said Jones, who in the wake of the Parkland school shooting deaths offered free concealed carry weapon (CCW) training for Butler County teachers.
“School boards, it’s on you. It’s your responsibility,” said Jones, who has promised to post billboard messages critical of elected school boards he believes are lagging in school security.
Matt Miller, superintendent of Lakota Schools — Butler County’s largest school system — said Friday the Texas school shooting was both heartbreakingly sad and further motivation to continue his district’s security improvements already in motion.
“It gives us pause and makes us reflect on the current practices and the direction we’ve been going with (school) safety,” said Miller, who oversees the 16,500-student district and its 22 school buildings.
“We have cameras and many other things in our buildings that we have increased” this school year, he said, in addition to armed security officers supplied by both the Butler County Sheriff, which patrols Liberty Twp. schools and West Chester Twp. Police, who patrol Lakota schools there.
“But it’s another sad day and we’ve had too many of these,” he said.