A small class of school employees and teachers was the first to take conceal and carry classes on Monday offered by Butler County Sheriff Richard Jones.
“There were nine of them,” Jones said. The men and women showed up for the eight-hour class with their own guns and ammunition.
Last week, in the wake of the Parkland, Fla. school shooting, Jones announced he would offer CCW basic training classes for teacher and school employees interested free of charge.
Hundreds signed up in a matter of days.
“Today we had nine. Tomorrow there will be 14 and more, probably 50, on Saturday,” Jones said. Fire instructors in the sheriff’s office are conducting the classes. A total of about 300 will receive the training in the next two weeks. No deputies have been take off patrol to teach the courses, the sheriff said.
Jones has been on local and national media talking about the training, and plenty of media want a glimpse of the class, he said. But the sheriff turned everyone down.
“They don’t what to be photographed,” Jones said. “These are just teachers and other employees who want to protect our children.”
Jones said they may be the first to act if a shooter enters an school.
“Anybody who works in a school needs to go through some kind of class to where they know what a gun sounds like to where they know what a gun looks like. They can tell where the bullets are coming from. They need to be able to identify and they need to know what bullets can do,” Jones said.
He noted historically the shooting is over before law enforcement arrives.
“Three and a half to four the shooting is over. It has stopped. The killing is done. It takes anywhere from six to eight minutes on average for police to get to the school,” he said
But he was clear, the training does not mean teachers will be armed in Butler County Schools soon. That is up to individual school boards to permit.
“There were people on the schools that have been in the military, men and women who have been around guns their entire life. This is a start. CCW in Ohio is required. You have to have at least 8 hours. We are going to do the 8 hours and in that eight hour are going to give them a little be more about schools. That doesn’t mean tomorrow they are going to be carrying guns in the schools. It is up to the school boards,” Jones said.