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Florida Guardian Program

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.

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Antigun Florida Guardian Program

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.

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Florida Guardian Program Uncategorized

Florida guardian stops armed intruder

A man armed with a 12 gauge flare gun that was loaded with a shotgun shell jumped the fence to enter the property of a Florida high school. He was confronted and stopped by an armed school guardian. My school district doesn’t allow teachers to be a part of this program.

I wonder why the man wasn’t arrested for possession of an unregistered NFA firearm?

Categories
Florida Guardian Program

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.

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Florida Guardian Program Uncategorized

Guardian

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.