A career school safety expert says a federal commission "dropped the ball" by recommending in a new report that arming of school staff should be incorporated into school security practices.
The Trump administration's school safety commission has come up with recommendations of how to prevent mass school shootings. Kenneth Trump, president of National School Safety and Security Services, says there are few new recommendations. One thing that is new, he says, is that it suggests working with local law enforcement to train and arm school personnel – an approach he opposes.
"The Federal Commission on School Safety report reinforced most of the best practices that have been in place since the post-Columbine era of nearly 20 years ago, with the exception of arming school staff. That's not a best practice; that's not something that we recommend," he explains.
In his article addressing the report, Trump argues that "if schools want an armed presence on campus, they should focus on having trained, commissioned, and professional police officers fill that role. Teachers want to be armed with technology and textbooks, not guns."
Trump contends that the new generation of school officials apparently is unaware of the emergency practices developed following the Columbine High School shootings in Colorado in 1999.
"... What they need to do is go back through the research, go back through the lessons that have been learned over the past two decades [and] they'll find what needs to be done," he tells OneNewsNow. "The question is: Do they have the political will and the administrative leadership to actually do those fundamental things?"
However, the school security professional does commend the commission for eliminating the Obama directive on school discipline, which made it difficult for local school officials to maintain control. He contends school discipline is ultimately a local issue that should be addressed by local school boards, administrators, educators, and parents – not by the federal government, which he says tends to "overreach" into local day-to-day school discipline.