Va. Bill Allowing Armed Guards In Private Schools Approved

Va. House of Delegates bill also applies to child day centers

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013  |  Updated 7:41 PM EDT
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Va. Allows Armed Guards In Private Schools

Jumoke Academy at Milner in Hartford is on lock-in.

The Virginia House of Delegates approved a bill Wednesday that would let private schools hire armed security guards - a measure barred under the current law.

The measure, HB 1582, was approved by a 72  to 25 vote. It's now headed to the Virginia Senate for consideration.

Before the vote, Delegate Kaye Kory (D-Fairfax County) spoke against the idea, arguing that security guards don't have enough training compared to law enforcement officers.

“School resource officers receive a minimum of 580 hours of training before being granted the privilege of carrying a gun in a school. Armed security guards only need 40 hours of training in order to do so,” Kory said before the House.

“We cannot approve sending such poorly trained armed guards into our private schools and daycare centers. We are inviting disaster,” Kory said.

Delegate Mark Cole (R-Fredericksburg) spoke in favor of the bill. “We are talking about private schools and private property and it should be left up to them to decide what they need for their security,” Cole said.

Under the bill, child day centers would also be able to hire armed guards.

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