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School Board Unanimously Says No To Proposal Allowing Armed Teachers

Spencer Tritt
DeKalb High School

The DeKalb School Board voted unanimouslyTuesday night against a proposal before the Illinois Association of School Boards on allowing trained staff -- including teachers -- to be armed on school property.

The association has been asking local school boards to weigh in before they vote later this month.

Several local members of the League of Women Voters, including DeKalb County Board Member Linda Slabon, who were at the meeting where the vote took place, voiced concerns about allowing more guns in schools.

“These would serve to bring guns into our schools," she said. "Schools should be places of safety. There is no evidence to show that armed personnel within a school increases school safety.  We cannot risk introducing firearms into the schools. We should be working to keep guns out of schools.”

The downstate Mercer School Board first introduced the measure last year.

School districts wouldn’t be forced to arm teachers, even if the resolution results in a new law this spring.

Districts like Mercer say they could use this choice because local law enforcement is too far away in case of an emergency situation, and they don't have the funding for a school resource officer.

If approved, the school board association would lobby for legislation to allow the practice this spring.