“The express language of the statute does not suggest an intention to allow teachers or staff to carry a firearm while on duty with less training than that indicated in the statute,” Judge Robert Ringland wrote for the court. “Rather, the plain language of the statute reveals that a board of education may only employ such persons if they have received significant training or have more than 20 years of experience.”
The district filed the appeal to the high court Thursday and a number of other school districts and the Ohio Attorney General’s Office have filed briefs in support. They said “it would be difficult to argue that this case does not present issues of public or great general interest.”
“This is more than a picayune squabble about how much training should be required when a school district exercises its right under the authorizing statute,” attorneys for the district wrote. “As a practical matter, this decision eliminates the ability of a local board of education to decide that the best way to protect students and staff from a hostile actor is by allowing some staff to carry concealed weapons on school grounds.”
The court challenge came in response to a gun policy that was passed after a 2016 shooting at Madison Jr./Sr. High School, where a student injured four of his classmates.