What should Pasco County Schools do to protect students next year? That is what will be discussed at an upcoming meeting.
According to documents posted on the District School Board of Pasco County’s website, the board is planning a discussion for April 17th. Among the topics, what to do about School Safety next year. (see presentation here)
The Florida Legislature passed a law recently that will require each school, including elementary schools, to have armed protection at them. In our home county of Pasco, that means a need for over 40 new hires.
The Pasco Sheriff’s Office already has numerous SRO’s (School Resource Officers) in most high schools and middle schools, but to cover elementary schools, will require about 45 or more new Deputies. This would cost millions and would take some time.
Alternatively the school board can choose to create “School Marshals” and arm certain school employees after limited training. This option is not popular amongst parents and some teachers.
Finally, they can hire School Safety Officers, who are specifically hired to be at the school armed to protect students but are not Deputy Sheriff’s from the Sheriff’s Office as SRO’s are. It is unclear what training or certifications they would have.
The school board will receive about 2.2 million dollars to use with whatever option it chooses.
As Wesley Chapel residents, what do you want to see done?