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Ohio school district could allow school employees to be armed

The board of education for Benjamin Logan Local Schools has not approved the response team, but it has approved the required training.

LOGAN COUNTY, Ohio — Students in the Benjamin Logan Local School district wrapped up their first day of class on Tuesday. 

The district has about 1,700 students and sits just 10 miles outside of Bellefontaine.

"We're kind of out in no-man's land,” said Superintendent John Scheu.

This school district could make a big decision soon.  

"I never thought that when I was a superintendent 21 years ago that I would even be considering something like this,” said Scheu. “Times have changed, and a dose of reality is that, if it can happen in all the rest of these school districts around the country it can happen at Ben Logan.”  

Back in June, Gov. Mike DeWine signed House Bill 99. It allows school employees who complete 24 hours of specific training to carry a handgun on school grounds.  

That could be a reality at Benjamin Logan Schools.  

Scheu said the board has not yet approved the response team, but it has approved the required training. Training that Scheu said will be with the Logan County Sheriff’s Department.  

Scheu said 22 staff members in the district including teachers, cooks, secretaries, have volunteered.  

He said the curriculum must be approved by the state before volunteers can go forward with the training.  

It's a possible safety measure the district could have but something Scheu hopes they'll never have to use.

“The most important thing is to guarantee to parents that their kids will come to school safe, and go home safe,” he said.  

10TV also spoke with the Logan County Sheriff Randall Dodds.  

Dodds said the training will include proper gun safety, dealing with trauma, and other safety areas.  

On average, the sheriff said he can only have about three deputies working a day in Logan County, and it takes nearly 15 minutes to get to the schools from Bellefontaine.  

"Children are, they're precious to us, and they're vital. And they're the...probably the number on things that we need to be responsible for," Dodds said.  

The district has hired two additional school resource officers to be placed in its three schools. That’s in addition to the one they already had.  

Some parents of Benjamin Logan Schools told 10TV, this is a safety measure they support.  

"The quicker somebody can take out that threat, the more people will be saved,” said Todd Shields, who has grandkids in the district.  

Shields, Lance Predmore, and Cedar Schneider feel an extra layer of protection can keep their kids safe.  

Sheriff Dodds said school members who could be a part of the response team have been working with sheriff deputies.  

It's not a part of the required training they must have.  

Dodds said on top of the training they’re getting now, they’ll have hundreds of hours of training if the safety measure is approved.  

"Hopefully it'll all just be a deterrent, and we'll never have to run into a situation where we have a tragedy,” said Schneider.  

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