Sheriff hopes elementary schools will get officers
Photo: Video by fox4now.com
CREATED May. 8, 2013
by Dave Culbreth
Fort Myers, Fla.
School is about to let out for the summer and one of the biggest memories of this school year will be the tragedy at Sandy Hook. The images of that horrific incident will linger on for quite some time. Also lingering in many people's minds is whether the same thing could happen here locally.
Sheriff Mike Scott told FOX4 he's getting real close to working out a deal with the school district to have an armed officer in every single school. It may not happen this year but he hopes it's coming. "We are currently in all the middle and high schools of Lee County."
That's 119 schools. But now Sheriff Mike Scott is looking to soon have uniformed, armed, and trained deputies in every elementary school as well.
"In the elementary schools we've traditionally not been in there. But now the debate after the Sandy Hook tragedy, the debate rages on; 'should we have officers in the elementary schools?'"
Scott says the answer is yes. However, like everything in life, someone's got to pay for it. "The school district stepped up and said they'll pay for half. That's our arrangement with them right now just so you know. They pay about fifty percent and we pay about fifty percent. This year we've applied for some grant monies too, federal grant money that we think will offset about twenty five percent of it."
He says if those grant monies come in it will be up to Lee County commissioners to agree to the officers. "We're trying to get it down to where it's almost too good to pass up and so the commissioners will see the value to having the officers here."
So, the bottom line is when the first school bell rings in August, what does he think are the chances that all the elementary schools will have armed officers? "I would say more realistic thing is probably half. And I think it’s more palatable for the commission. We'll see how this goes, how it plays out"
There are 45 elementary schools in Lee County. So, if what he said happens, that means about two dozen elementary schools will have officers and it will leave two dozen that won't.
Copyright, 2013 WFTX