Local school district wants armed administrators

By Denise Jackson

January 14, 2013 Updated Jan 15, 2013 at 11:20 AM CDT

WASHINGTON, Ill -- Monday marked the one month anniversary for the shooting massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut.

After the tragedy,the National Rifle Association called for armed guards at every school to protect kids.

One local school district is considering a proposal that could allow some administrators to carry guns.

Washington Police Detective Lyle Baele works as school resource officer at Washington High School. In light of the recent shooting massacre in Newtown, Connecticut; Superintendent Jim Dunnan says he would like to see three administrators trained to carry guns in case of an emergency.

"Guns and schools unfortunately those problems can exist at any time, at any place, at any location," he said. "I think our position is that we just want to be as proactive as we can and it's nice to be able to get out on the front end of things sometimes and play offense."

Last year, the school district completed a $10.2 million dollar renovation project with security upgrades. The superintendent says providing armed staff would enhance their efforts.

Washington Police Chief Jim Kuchenbecker says the training they would get would be the same as that of full time police officers and they would be required to meet monthly training criteria

"The end of the day the only thing that needs to be our top priority here in the school is the safety, security of nearly 1,300 people," he said. "The purpose of this is nothing more than to add another tool on to our tool belt in the event of the worst possible scenario."

Superintendent Dunnan says with armed administrators the school would have trained officers even during those times Detective Baele is out of the building.

"If it does happen it means that you'll have additional people to be on your side that are there at zero response time," Baele said.

If the school district is given the green light officials would draft a policy for designated administrators to carry weapons before a vote would be considered.

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