Guardian Standards & Training

A comment on my recent Guardian post makes me want to clear up misconceptions of the training standards for Florida’s guardian program. For reference, here is the comment:

To be fair you have skipped over mentioning an important item. The contracted security MUST have each officer qualify through the Florida Guardian Training. 144+ hours, 132hrs is range, shoot house and school simulated scenarios. Thousands of rounds fired and strict qualifications all the way out to 25 yard timed shooting. The guardians are fully capable with firearms.

The training breaks down like this:

  • 12 hours of it is in diversity training
  • 12 hours in psychological counseling
  • 12 hours of negotiation and counseling skills
  • only 80 hours in firearms training, and not all of that is range time.
  • 12 hours in legal issues (counts as part of the firearms training)

The firearms training breaks down like this:

  • 8 hours of simulator training (think shoot/no shoot training)
  • 8 hours of scenario training (not range time)
  • 8 hours of defensive tactics (also not range time)
  • 12 hours of training in legal issues (not range time)
  • 16 hours of instruction in precision pistol (not all range time, some is classroom)

By law, guardians must fire at least 90 percent, but no more than 120 percent, of the rounds fired by police candidates at the police academy. How many rounds is that? Well, it varies. The standards are set by the state, but the specifics are set by each school. The only school that I could find that listed the number of rounds fired mandates 400 rounds of pistol and 50 rounds of shotgun. So call it a total of 500 rounds fired. That would mean Guardians would need to fire from 450 to 600 rounds during this course. Certainly not “thousands of rounds fired.”

It also says that they must score an 85 percent on the qualifier. What does that entail? Well that is available online.

  • At one to three yards, from the holster: Draw and fire two rounds into the target in 4 seconds. Repeat once for a total of 4 rounds.
  • At three yards, from high ready: Fire 2 rounds into the target in 1 second. Repeat twice for a total of 6 rounds.
  • At seven yards, from the holster: Draw and fire 2 rounds in four seconds. Then from high ready, 2 rounds in 4 seconds, then 2 more rounds in 4 seconds. Total of 6 rounds.
  • At seven yards, from the holster: Draw and fire 3 rounds in five seconds. Repeat once for a total of 6 rounds.
  • At 7 yards, from the holster: Draw and fire 12 rounds in 45 seconds, with a mandatory reload.
  • At 15 yards, from the holster: Draw and fire 6 rounds in 30 seconds.

Scoring: Any hit on the silhouette of a B-21 target is scored as a hit. Guardians must score 34 hits out of 48 rounds in a total of 1:53 with a single mandatory reload.

If you know anything about shooting, you would know that 2.1 rounds per second with a “hit” on a target 2 times as wide and 2 times as tall as an IDPA hit zone isn’t especially hard.

Compare this to an IDPA classifier course of fire. (pdf warning) An IDPA classifier requires 4 reloads instead of the one required by guardians. It also requires that the shooter hit a smaller target, including head shots. Still, let’s compare.

If we were to shoot an IDPA qualifier at that rate of fire with an 85% hit rate, we would score somewhere around a 200. That is barely marksman territory for a shooter with a Stock Service Pistol, and that is giving them some, considering the large size of the target area that qualifies as a “hit.”

So, no. The Guardian training isn’t thousands of rounds, nor is it particularly demanding. I daresay that most of the readers of this blog could score well on that test with no additional training.

Most Training EVAR

Osceola County School Resource officers claim to be receiving “the most extensive active-shooter training ever.” Let’s look at that training:

When they become an SRO, they receive 40 hours of training to become certified as SROs. The majority of that 40 hours is spent in crisis-intervention, bully-prevention, childhood development and psychology. What percentage of that is active shooter training? Ten percent? Less? Range time?

This summer, the deputies received another 36 hours of training. They spent a day of this in crisis intervention training, including roleplaying, learning how to listen, and talking to children in crisis. What does that have to do with active shooter training? How much of those 36 hours was range time? Less than 8 hours:

Lopez said all SROs also spent a full day on the firing range, practicing with handguns and long guns.

Look at this picture. They are practicing at a range of less than 10 feet. Zoom in on that target. Not exactly impressive for dealing with guns around lots of non threats, like a school full of kids. Keep in mind that your accuracy during static range time will be much better than during an actual shooter event.

How about the 50 foot rifle practice?

What the actual fuck? My daughter shot better than this when she was 12 years old. Maybe they are better with the shotguns. Let’s see.

Wait a minute. Those aren’t even cops. Those are the armed security guards that Osceola county is using as guardians instead of teachers. They can’t shoot for shit, either. Look at those shooting stances. What is that? 20 feet? Is some minimum wage asshole with a shotgun that he trains with at 20 feet going to rush a shooter to save your kids? Probably not.

Of course, it isn’t like this career donut eating, Farva looking fat ass is going to be rushing anyone without having to take a break, either.

So the average SRO has a total of 76 hours of training in operating in a school, and less training with guns than a barber does in cutting hair. That’s right- in Florida¬†more hours of training are required to be a barber¬†than are required to be a police officer.

What about teachers who are part of the guardian program? Well, aside from the fact that there are NO classroom teachers in Florida who are part of the guardian program, any teacher who would be part of it is required to receive 144 hours of use of force training. Contrast that with police officers. Most cops in Florida get 80 hours or less TOTAL of firearms training,  so even if you count the training they have to become SROs, Osceola SROs have more training than ever- 156 hours, which is only 16 hours more than a guardian, even though most of that time is spent jerking off while on the clock, but guardians can’t be trusted.

Guardian Program

I am typing this as a reply to AMA over there at GunFreeZone. In his post, AWA wonders about the Guardian program. Let’s lay out the truth:

Florida established a Guardian program, which was supposed to allow teachers to undergo training so that they could be armed on school campus, to prevent mass shootings in school. At this time, 45 of Florida’s 67 counties have complied with the program, mostly because there is a lot of grant money tied to participating in the program, but the devil is in the details.

Although they can legally take part in the Guardian Program, no one is permitted to take part without the approval of both the sheriff and the superintendent of schools in their county. Instead of arming teachers, school districts have gone in one of two directions: armed, uniformed security guards, or having administrators as the only ones permitted to take part in the program. Principals, superintendents, and some county level office staff, or armed, uniformed security guards will be the only ones permitted to be armed under this program. Anyone who is taking part will get a free gun, ammo, training, and a stipend for having the extra certification. It is more of a slush fund for handing out money and power than it is a real program. Let’s take a look at some Florida counties and how they are handling the program:

Bay county has armed, uniformed security guards as school guardians. No teachers are permitted to apply.

Broward county hires armed, uniformed guards. To be eligible, the guard must have two years’ law enforcement or military experience. The position pays minimum wage. The county has problems filling the positions, due to tight requirements and low pay. I am sure that we can trust minimum wage employees to risk their lives by running into an armed conflict to save our kids.

Duval county has hired armed, uniformed security guards.

Hernando county has hired 5 armed, uniformed security guards. No teachers. They have a total of 5 guardians, 23 deputy SROs, and 3 supervising deputies covering the 31 schools in Hernando county.

Lake county has decided to arm administrators only, and had received 30 applications from principals, vice principals, and other administrative level staff. Twenty administrative staff members were certified under the program. None of them were classroom teachers.

Lee county has guardians, but none of them are teachers.

Leon County has armed administrators only. They have specifically refused to arm teachers, coaches, or counselors.

Osceola county is saving money by contracting the Guardian program to a private security company for armed, uniformed security guards, and using these security guards to replace armed police officers. Since the guards make significantly less money than cops, the school district is likely profiting from the program.

Santa Rosa county has chosen to hire armed security guards. Teachers need not apply.

St Johns county has hired 18 uniformed, armed security guards. No teachers are a part of the program.

Volusia county has armed, uniformed security guards as their guardians. No teachers are a part of the program.

These are the only counties that I could find articles for online that specified who was a guardian. So why the emphasis on security guards, instead of simply arming teachers? My theory is that there are teachers on the left, and teachers on the right side of the spectrum. The left wing teachers have been all over the news lately, teaching tranny and homosexuality issues to the kids. The teachers on the right are the ones most likely to volunteer to be guardians. The left can’t stand the thought of armed conservatives, so there is no way that teachers will ever be armed.

Hardening Targets

President Trump and Senator Cruz have suggested making schools hardened targets by making them single point ingress, and placing security there. Experts are saying that this won’t work. They claim that because making a single point entry won’t stop all shootings, it isn’t worth doing.

Let’s just start by saying that there is not one magic solution that will stop all shooters. I don’t think that it is possible to stop all mass murderers, however, even the FBI had admitted (pdf warning) that every active shooter incident since 2000 has happened in a ‘gun free zone’. It makes for interesting reading.

All you can do is make their efforts more difficult in the hope that it will greatly reduce the number of incidents, and reduce the number of victims in each incident. With that in mind, Florida went a long way in doing just that:

  • Every school in the state must be surrounded by a fence that is a minimum of 5 feet tall. Any opening in that fence must have security in place to ensure that unauthorized people aren’t entering campus.
  • Security cameras must monitor hallways so office staff can monitor them for intruders.
  • All schools must have armed security on campus during school hours.
  • All classrooms must be locked except during period changes.
  • Train teachers and students on how to barricade classrooms, which turned into a pissing contest between teachers and cops.

That doesn’t mean that Florida is perfect. They failed in one area when they instituted a “guardian” program to allow teachers who volunteer for over 100 hours of training to carry weapons on campus. The failure was that any teacher wanting to be a guardian is subject to a requirement that they be approved by both the county sheriff and the Superintendent of the school district. This has resulted in no schools arming teachers in the entire state, with the exception of the superintendents and their chosen friends in each school district. This means that maybe a dozen or so teachers at most are approved in each district, and they are likely to be office personnel that are not present on school campuses, but rather in the district central office, where no students are present. The guardian program wound up being a waste of time, like may issue.

In summary, the only way to reduce the number of school shootings is make the school a less attractive target. Single point access control is just one of several things that need to happen.

May issue guardians

Florida recently passed a law which expands the “Guardian Program” to include teachers. The program is designed to arm select school employees to receive special training. Any school district that establishes a guardian program gets additional funding and grant money in order to implement the program.

Now that the students are finished with their school year, teachers are in the midst of what is known as “post planning days” and learning about planned changes for the next school year. Thanks to the fact that the school district gets to pick who is a guardian, the system is going the way that ALL “may issue” programs go. What teachers are hearing about the Guardian Program is:

Although they can legally take part in the Guardian Program, teachers will still not be permitted to take part. Instead, administrators will be the only ones permitted to take part. Principals, superintendents, and some county level office staff will be the only ones permitted to take part. Anyone who is taking part will get a free gun, ammo, training, and a stipend for having the extra certification.

The school districts have turned this “may issue” system into a cash cow for earning grant money and redistributing some of that grant money to select, politically connected individuals. The guardian program has been corrupted to the point where it is completely useless.


Today the Florida Senate voted to remove the prohibition on teachers carrying firearms as a part of the Guardian program. This ends the law that armed school janitors and lunch ladies, but denied the same ability to teachers. Opponents claim that this places too much of a burden on teachers. I don’t see how, since the program is entirely voluntary, and should a teacher ever need to use their weapon to defend their students, it will be less of a burden than standing by as they watch someone murder their students or even getting murdered themselves.

As for me, I have already volunteered for the program. I hope that I am selected. I even used it as an excuse to buy a new handgun. I just bought a M&P 2.0 9mm Compact. I caught one on sale at my local gun store. They had them on sale for $379, and at that price they threw in 4 magazines and a $50 gift card.

I put a new set of Trijicon HD sights on it, and installed an Apex Action Enhancement kit. The new action lowered my trigger pull to what I measured to be 4.75 pounds and removed the grit from the trigger. The trigger now has a smooth pre-travel, and a clean, crisp break.

Now to wait for the House and my school district.