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Ohio sheriff says hundreds signed up for gun training for teachers

An Ohio sheriff said hundreds of local school employees signed up for a class to receive training on how to use a firearm in the aftermath of a high school shooting in Florida that left 17 people dead.

“We put it online, we thought we’d get 20 school teachers maybe. Within 20 minutes we had 40. Within an hour we had 100. Within four hours we had 200. By the next morning, at 300, we cut it off,” Butler County Sheriff Richard Jones said on “Fox & Friends.”

“We can’t stop the school shootings, we can’t stop guns from being manufactured, but we’ve got to do something, we’ve got to make the schools more of a hardened target,” he said, adding that the class was open to teachers, secretaries and maintenance workers.

{mosads}The class was organized in response to a mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., where 17 people were killed and several more were injured. The shooting has prompted a renewed debate on gun safety laws and reforms that could prevent future school shootings. 

Jones said only a few schools in Ohio permit the concealed carry of a weapon, saying the plan to arm teachers in the state would work “if the school boards have the guts to make it a reality.” He added school staffers should go through a mandatory training course that helps them identify what a gun sounds like and where gunfire is coming from.

“We have to do something here because we can’t wait for our government to do anything. All they do is fight, they get nothing done,” he said.

President Trump has in recent days repeatedly proposed arming teachers as a way to prevent future school shootings. He has suggested those willing to undergo training to carry a firearm could receive a bonus for doing so, and called arming teachers a “big & very inexpensive deterrent” to school shootings.

Democrats have overwhelmingly opposed the idea of arming teachers, and multiple Republicans have said they disagree with the proposal. A number of educators have also come out against the concept.

The president has also indicated he is open to other reforms to curb gun violence, including strengthened background checks, an increased age requirement to purchase semi-automatic weapons and a ban on bump stocks.

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