Trump prefers ‘hardening’ schools over holding active shooter drills
President Trump on Thursday said he is opposed to active shooter drills in schools and prefers “hardened schools” with increased security in the building.
“Active shooter drills is a very negative thing … I don’t like it,” Trump said during a meeting with local officials on school safety.
“I’d much rather have a hardened school … I think it’s crazy. I think it’s very hard on children,” he added.
Earlier in the meeting, Trump reiterated his support for arming some teachers to prevent future school shootings. He suggested it would be difficult to hire enough security guards to properly protect a school, but allowing some teachers to carry concealed handguns could help solve the problem.
“I want certain highly adept people, people who understand weaponry, guns,” Trump said, suggesting teachers would receive “rigorous training” and could earn bonuses.
“If you harden the sites you’re not going to have this problem,” Trump said.
Trump’s comments echo those made earlier Thursday by National Rifle Association (NRA) CEO Wayne LaPierre. Speaking at the Conservative Political Action Conference, LaPierre said increased security is the best defense against future school shootings.
“Evil walks among us, and God help us if we don’t harden our schools and protect our kids,” LaPierre said.
“Every day young children are being dropped off at schools that are wide-open, soft targets for people bent on mass murder. It should not be easier for a madman to shoot up a school than a bank or a jewelry store or some Hollywood gala.”
The top NRA executive promised his organization would provide “immediate assistance” to schools for security consulting free of charge.
The meeting at the White House Thursday was the second panel in as many days in response to last week’s shooting at a Florida high school, where a gunman killed 17 people and injured more than a dozen others.
In the wake of the shooting, gun control advocates, Democratic lawmakers and some Republicans have called for legislation to curb gun violence.