SIDNEY, Ohio (WDTN) – Locked away in a box – accessible only by a fingerprint scanner: a Glock pistol.
It sits on the bookshelf of Sidney City Schools Superintendent John Scheu.
Teachers and staff in the Sidney City School District have access to firearms on campus – a decision that’s grabbing national headlines.
Scheu says given the nation’s rising problem of school shootings, it’s best to be prepared, and arming teachers could be one way to prevent tragedy.
“Every single parent should at least be able expect their kids, at then end of the day, come home safe and sound,” Scheu said.
Inside every school building, there are handguns locked away in safes, accessible only to trained teachers, just in case an active shooter comes on campus.
“We have had practice drills, we’ve had training,” Scheu said. “And we feel quite confident that we can put out any threat or address any threat within a matter of seconds, versus minutes that it would take for any police force to arrive here and put the threat out.”
Armed teachers are just one tier of what Scheu calls a “layered approach” to school security.
The district also has armed uniformed school security officers; And in Scheu’s own office, just behind the door, a bullet proof vest.
Some Sidney residents say, they’re on board with the school’s plan.
“Now we can be able to protect the students and the teachers, as well,” Cheyenne Copeland, A Sidney High School graduate said.
Another resident, Joe Reynolds added: “I do believe it’s a good idea. It becomes a mitigating factor because if these kids know that teachers have guns at the school, it may deter them from bringing a weapon to school and trying something.”
As the national conversation over school safety and gun control continues, the Sidney School District appeared in the New York Times Friday morning for its decision to arm teachers.
“There have been 200 school shootings since Sandyhook,” Scheu said. “There’s something wrong with everything associated with this whole mess.”