Spirit Lake School Board Approves Plan To Let Some School Staff Carry Firearms

Spirit Lake, Iowa — The Spirit Lake Community School Board has unanimously voted to let up to 10 staff members who aren’t teachers carry a concealed firearm on school grounds.

District officials say if there’s an active shooter in Spirit Lake schools, this plan will provide an immediate response until local law enforcement officials arrive. Superintendent David Smith says those chosen to carry a gun will have to undergo extensive marksmanship and tactical training. Spirit Lake Police Chief Shane Brevik recently released a letter, stating he was opposed to the policy. The superintendent says that was a surprise to him.

The school board received more than 200 public comments about the policy. The police chief is among those who submitted a letter, saying there’s merit to a safety plan, but arming civilians to deal with intruders provides a false sense of security and might interfere with law enforcement response. Superintendent Smith, in remarks to the school board, called the letter a sabotage job.

More than a dozen Spirit Lake staff members have already begun training with local firearm instructors. In the school district’s survey, 47 district employees publicly said they supported the new safety plan, while only one said they opposed it.


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