Community Blog: The EDge

Pocatello allows SROs to carry rifles

School resource officers will be allowed to bring service rifles into Pocatello schools — but the weapons will be stored in locked safes.

The Pocatello School Board approved the policy Wednesday night, according to the Idaho State Journal.

A few talking points from the article:

  • From the policy: “The board of trustees of the Pocatello/Chubbuck School District 25 has no intent to move in the direction of allowing school personnel to carry weapons onto school property.” Under state law, school boards can allow teachers and employees to bring guns to school.
  • Pocatello Police Chief Scott Marchand said it was critical to allow SROs to have semiautomatic rifles on hand. “In my opinion this is the tool I would want to be armed with. … I don’t want my guys to be out-gunned.”
  • The board passed the policy on a 4-1 vote, with Paul Vitale casting the lone dissenting vote. “I think it’s just too early.”

In the aftermath of the Dec. 14 Newtown, Conn., school shootings, the state has convened a task force to study school safety issues.

Kevin Richert is a reporter and blogger at Idaho Education News (idahoednews.org). Kevin is a former Statesman editorial page editor, with 27 year's experience in Idaho journalism.

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