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Forum held in Cody for proposed policy that would allow school staff members to carry concealed weapons

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CODY, Wyo. -

Most of the people who came to a forum Monday night said no to armed teachers in public schools. The forum was held to get response from the public on a proposed policy that would allow school staff members to carry concealed weapons for school protection. Some people spoke for the policy, but many more spoke against it.

Since the beginning of the school year, Cody’s school board has been debating a proposed policy of allowing school personnel, including teachers, to carry concealed weapons on campus. The school district calls it CKA. The trustees decided to ask people in the community for their opinions.

Before the meeting even started, many wore their opinions on their chests: badges that said no to CKA. And the people who wore those badges wore red shirts of solidarity.

Among the comments against the policy:

“The likelihood of something negative happening points toward an accident.”

“…the school risks will increase by allowing amateurs to carry firearms.”

“The amount of training that is proposed by this policy is wholly inadequate.”

There were some who spoke in favor of arming school personnel in Cody schools. But they were outnumbered by people who wanted to know how much the new policy would cost the district, how much the liability insurance would be.

And by those who felt teachers should not have their attention divided between their classroom duties, and the use and concealment of a weapon.

Many asked the trustees to use hire more highly trained school officers, than depend on 24 hours of training for school personnel.

Several noted they were not against guns, or the second amendment. One parent said he often carries a concealed weapon.

But  Jason Todd remarked, “The probability of you having an accidental discharge, or somebody getting shot by one of the teachers carrying a weapon is much higher than somebody coming into the school and shooting it up.”

One speaker questioned whether the trustee who introduced the policy had a conflict of interest. Trustee Scott Weber owns a gun store two blocks from Cody’s High School.

One speaker asked people in the audience who were against guns in the schools to stand up. Most of the audience stood.

One parent said she would take her children out of Cody Schools if the CKA policy is approved by the trustees. The school board did not plan to make a decision Monday night.

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