Oklahoma House committee approves bill easing training requirements for armed teachers

The Oklahoma House Public Safety Committee meets Feb. 28 at the State Capitol. (KOKH/Caroline Vandergriff)

An Oklahoma House Committee has approved a bill easing the training required for schools to arm teachers and staff.

HB 3192 was approved by the Oklahoma House Public Safety Committee with an 11-5 vote. The bill would give school boards the power to arm teachers and staff if they have a valid concealed carry permit. It would not require staff to undergo any further training.

Under current law, districts can vote to arm employees if they have completed peace officer training or armed security guard training.

The author of the bill, Rep. Jeff Coody, argued that this is the only answer available to lawmakers at this time.

"The only reasonable solution in many of these cases is to have someone on the inside who can eliminate the threat before it becomes more catastrophic," Rep. Coody said in the meeting.

He believes it is important for individual districts to be able to decide what they think is best for their schools.

"We’re talking about the safety of our school kids," Rep. Coody said. "This is not advancing an agenda. This is not anything for the NRA. This is doing what’s right and best for our school kids."

The bill is now eligible to heard on the House floor.

The committee also approved HB 2951 which would allow Oklahomans to carry a firearm without a permit.

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