On Tuesday, April 23, Florida Senate passed a bill to allow school school teachers to carry firearms, regardless of other roles.
This comes after a much needed reevaluation to school safety after the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School where 17 students and faculty members were killed on Feb. 14, 2018. The vote was passed 22-17 to expand the "Guardian" program which was passed last year.
The "Guardian" bill was designated initially for those without roles in the classroom such as a athletics coach or administrator (approved by the district) to carry a gun but after hours of discussion, the Senate passed the bill on a 22-17 vote to expand it to teachers as well.
“This legislation continues our efforts to proactively enhance coordination between education, law enforcement, and community mental-health resources to ensure at-risk students receive the help they need before a tragedy occurs,” Senate President Bill Galvano, R-Bradenton, said in a statement after the vote.
In addition to school officials being able to carry weapons, Senate has also proposed a total of $100 million for mental health funding.