CLEVELAND — One day after Gov. Mike DeWine signed a bill into law that will allow school districts in Ohio to arm employees, the Cleveland Metropolitan School District's Board of Education unanimously voted not to allow its educators to carry firearms in schools.
"We know this is the right thing to do," CMSD Board Chair Anne Bingham said following the vote during Tuesday's work session. "I can't imagine what the (Ohio) legislature is thinking."
The new Ohio law requires up to 24 hours of training before an employee can be armed, and up to eight hours of annual training. The training programs must be approved by the Ohio School Safety Center, and DeWine announced he's ordering the center to require the maximum 24 hours and the maximum eight hours.
In its resolution, CMSD noted that state law previously required 600 hours of training in order for anyone to be permitted to carry a gun on school grounds.
"The Board of Education of the Cleveland Metropolitan School District believes that the presence of undertrained or improperly trained persons armed with firearms in our schools would create a dangerous environment in our schools, and threaten the lives and safety of students and staff," the resolution stated.
The new law “is giving schools an option, based on their particular circumstances, to make the best decision they can make with the best information they have,” DeWine said on Monday. He added that his preference remains that school districts hire armed school resource officers, but said the law is another tool for districts that want to protect children. DeWine emphasized that that the new law is optional, not a requirement.
You can watch Tuesday's CMSD Board of Education work session from Tuesday below:
The Associated Press and 10TV contributed to this report