Gov. DeSantis signs bill that would let teachers be armed in class

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By: Tim Chong | WTSP 10 News
May 8, 2019

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTSP) — Governor Ron DeSantis has signed a bill that would let school districts allow teachers to carry firearms in classrooms.

The Implementation of Legislative Recommendations of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Commission bill was signed Wednesday. DeSantis signed the bill in private and issued no statement.

It was one of the more contentious bills of a legislative session that ended Saturday.

Among the recommendations is "removing the prohibition against classroom teachers serving as school guardians." Teachers would not be required to carry guns, but those who volunteer would have to undergo firearms training, possess a valid concealed weapon permit and pass both psychological evaluation and drug test.

Under current law, only teachers who also have another role, such as sports coach, are eligible to carry weapons on campus.

School districts have the final word on whether they will let teachers carry firearms on campus. Hillsborough County and Sarasota County school leaders have said they will not let their teachers be armed in the classroom.

Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri was the chairman of the safety commission, formed after 17 people were killed in February 2018 at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

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